New ‘Checkpoint Friendly’ Laptop Bag Procedures

Our Friends in TSA just annouced this….


August 15, 2008

Starting Aug. 16, TSA will allow laptops to remain in bags meeting new ‘checkpoint friendly’ guidelines. Not all laptop bags are ‘checkpoint friendly’
(see images below).

Click here to learn more about the industry process and guidelines for laptop bag.
Click here to read the press release on “TSA Ready for ‘checkpoint friendly’ Laptop Bags”.

To help streamline the security process and better protect laptops TSA has recently encouraged manufacturers to design bags that will produce a clear and unobstructed image of the laptop when undergoing X-ray screening. A design that meets this objective will enable TSA to allow laptops to remain in bags for screening.

Industry enthusiastically met the call and more than 60 manufacturers responded, 40 of them submitting prototypes for testing. TSA opened three airports for manufacturers to perform live testing of these prototypes with Transportation Security Officers (TSO) so the manufacturers can gain feedback on what works and what doesn?t with various bag designs.

Photo of bag designs that provide clear X-ray images
Photo of a red circle with a horizontal slash
Photo of bag designs that do not provide clear X-ray images

TSA screens laptops to see if the electronics have been tampered with. TSOs know what the inside of a computer should look like, and can recognize irregularities. This is why they need an unobstructed view as the item moves through the X-ray machine.

Purchasing one of these bags will not guarantee that you can leave your laptop in your bag for screening. If a TSO finds that the bag does not present a clear and distinct image of the laptop separate from the rest of the bag, the laptop will have to be screened separately.

There are laptop bag styles currently on the market, such as laptop-only sleeves, that have the potential to present a clear X-ray image of the laptop if they are correctly packed. However, most current laptop bags will not present a clear X-ray image and should not be sent through the X-ray with the laptop inside.

What does this mean for passengers?

If you intend to use a ‘checkpoint friendly’ laptop bag once they are on the market, make sure to check that:

  • Your laptop bag has a designated laptop-only section that can lay flat on the X-ray belt
  • There are no metal snaps, zippers or buckles inside, underneath or on-top of the laptop-only section
  • There are no pockets on the inside or outside of the laptop-only section
  • There is nothing in the laptop compartment other than the laptop
  • You have completely unfolded your bag so that there is nothing above or below the laptop-only section, allowing the bag to lay flat on the X-ray belt

Remember, a well designed ‘checkpoint friendly’ bag must be packed appropriately if you intend to leave your laptop in your bag for screening.

TSA is not approving or endorsing any bag design or manufacturer and will only allow laptops to stay in bags through screening if they provide a clear and unobstructed
X-ray image of the laptop.

Click here to go to the Original Post…… Original TSA Post  

I feel this is a major step in the right direction. 

Posted by Michael Corey


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