Home Green Consumer New TSA Strip Search Scanners May Be Unsafe

New TSA Strip Search Scanners May Be Unsafe


The University of California, and the Airline Pilot’s Association are cautioning the public about TSA’s new naked strip search x-ray scanners now being deployed at all of America’s airports. The new scanners use x-rays to reveal the person going through the scanner.  This is a full image scan of an individual, and allows for a fairly graphic representation of your body.  The University of California issued a letter to the government stating that they have discovered that no real safety data exists for using such scanners on the public.  Real independent safety data does not exist. There has not been sufficient review of the intermediate and long-term effects of radiation exposure associated with airport scanners. There is good reason to believe that these scanners will increase the risk of cancer to children and other vulnerable populations. Air travelers over 65 years old are especially susceptible to the “mutagenic effects of the X-rays,” according to UC biochemistry professor John Sedat, a member of the National Academy of Sciences, as are HIV and cancer patients, children and adolescents, pregnant women, and men (because the X-rays can penetrate skin and put the testicles “at risk for sperm mutagenesis”}. Eyes could also be at risk because X-rays can penetrate the cornea.  Even the Airline Pilot’s Association is telling its pilot’s not to go through the scanners.  Individuals who fly often should avoid them as well.  The problem is that the TSA will get physically invasive with future searches if you choose to decline the scan.  I did, and will continue to do so.  The experience is not pleasant.  The reality is that this new procedure is an affront to our privacy and liberties.  This is overkill, and an example of Orwellian government taking hold.  What is not to keep the government from keeping the scanned information on file without our permission?  Metal detectors are adequate, as are the new security doors on cockpits.  We have enough security at the airport as is.  The new scanners should be banned.

On this Thanksgiving eve there is a call for a national boycott by passengers not to use the scanners, it’s being called “National Opt Out of the Airport Scanners Day,”.  The effort is to jam security lines on that day, to force the government to reconsider using these scanners and the intrusive pat downs.

Photo:  TSA Scanned Image   Photo Credit: John Wild


  1. Not to mention pregnant women and the damage to the fetus or those with some form of old metal in their bodies or reaction of those who may have extensive tattoos.

    This is an outrage and we are giving the ‘real’ terrorists a good laugh while they sit back and watch our entire way of life… all our freedoms be ripped away. They don’t have to terrorize us anymore, they’ve got our own government doing it for them.

  2. How quickly we forget 9-11, the Detroit Christmas Day bomber, the Shoe Bomber, and numerous other threats which all could have been prevented had they been using this scanner. If you have a problem with the scanners and the searches, please feel free to drive your car. People speaking as ‘experts’ who are clearly ignorant about security offend me.

  3. Kimberly:
    RE: 9-11 It was a prior set up. Thermite was found at WTC & explosions were heard going off before the buildings fell.
    RE: Shoe Bomber: After Reid attempted to blow up an American Airlines flight out of Paris, Massachusetts State Police officers boarded the plane at 12:55 p.m. on Dec. 22, 2001, handcuffed Reid and removed him from the plane, according to U.S. District Court records.
    RE: Christmas Day Bomber: n response to a growing rash of public ire about new pat-downs and in anticipation of the large amount of airline travel expected on Thanksgiving next week, John Pistole, the head of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), told the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee that the new search methods were an essential component to ensuring airport security.

    Pistole also said that had Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab been successful in his attempt to blow up a Detroit-bound flight last year with a bomb sewn into his underwear, Congress and American public would be much more accepting of the pat-down technique. He added that the technique was being employed as a way to stay ahead of potential terrorist plots.

  4. Kimberly, you are dangerously misinformed. It has been widely reported that the “Underwear Bomber” and “Shoe Bomber” might not necessarily have been caught using the scanners. As a former news writer, I am offended when someone speaks with authority on a public blog, trying to influence opinions, when he or she clearly does not have the facts. Those facts include that the aggressive push to use these particular scanners has been driven by Michael Chertoff, former Homeland Security chief, whose private consulting firm The Chertoff Group counts OSI (the parent company of scanner maker Rapiscan) among its key clients. And that the CEO of OSI accompanied the president on his recent trip to India. And that George Soros, who owned a considerable amount of stock in OSI, sold off his entire equity stake last week for a handsome return. Please don’t spread disinformation on the web. Read more, write less.


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