T.S.A. Says Screening Missteps Allowed Box Cutters on Flight 253
The Transportation Security Administration says a faulty screening process allowed a box cutter to end up in the hands of the hijackers of Flight 253.
NPR’s John Burnett reports,
The Transportation Security Administration is investigating why passengers on board Flight 253 were allowed to pass through a security screening line.
Here’s an account of events from David Rohde, an author and journalist who was on board the plane when the crash occurred.
DAN BERNSTEIN: I’m Dan Bernstein from NPR and this is The Steve Inskeep Show.
WOMAN: All right. I’m going to need you back here in one minute. (indiscernible) (indiscernible)
BEFORE: Well, I was about to pass through for screening when I saw my ticket. And then I realized that he didn’t even have one. So I asked, “Is there a ticket on this?” And he said, “No, you can’t use it. We’ve been stopped.” They don’t let you use it.
BEFORE: I started panicking, and I thought, “What if he’s on our flight. They’ll be forced to take us.”
WOMAN: Oh no, I am not going to be on that plane.
BEFORE: So I just asked him if there’s a seat that’s not on the seat back, and they just grabbed me and pushed me through the security line.
BEFORE: Oh, he did, yes, a seat on the first row, and I thought it was going to be very interesting, because as I started to pass out, they just shoved me through the line. They would just grab you, and they would push you through the line.
WOMAN: Just put me in the second row.
WOMAN: And then they did the same to me, but then I was lucky and I was behind him, so he didn’t push me through the line.
BEFORE: So he didn’t push me through the line. I don’t know if this is the seat or not, but it’s very convenient. I don’t even have to stand. I don’t have to walk to the first row. I just walk over there and they