Remove the Twinkies from your carry-on: TSA’s new stance on screening snack foods

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TSA airport security checkpoint
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If you don’t fly very often, you might be in for a rude surprise the next time you take to the friendly skies — your snacks may have to come out of your carry-on go into a plastic bin for separate screening!

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TSA recommendation being enforced more often

A recent recommendation by the Transportation Security Administration means that screening supervisors at the nation’s airports have the right to ask travelers to remove food from their carry-ons for additional screening.

While the recommendation is discretionary, more and more travelers are reporting TSA agents are putting it into effect at airports like Chicago O’Hare International, Los Angeles International, Newark Liberty International and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International, among others.

TSA spokesman Mike England tells the Washington Post that the snack-screening recommendation’s purpose is twofold.

First, the obvious explanation: It’s intended to detect explosives before they make it onto airplanes.

But beyond that, England notes that the food itself can look like the makings of a bomb when viewed in an X-ray screener. Therefore, getting the food out and into its own plastic bin for screening can eliminate unnecessary searches that would delay travelers.

Critics of the new recommendation say they’re doubtful it will help speed things up. In fact, they contend it’s more likely to have the opposite effect.

Meanwhile, if you think some TSA rules border on the absurd, you’re not alone. One Team Clark staffer recently found that the TSA has an official protocol for transporting a live lobster through security.

Who woulda thunk it?!?

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