Sure, there are a lot of things the Transportation Security Administration does right. Catching gun parts in stuffed animals? Great job! But one diabetic Colorado teen is upset with the agency, blaming TSA screeners for breaking the $10,000 insulin pump she needs to survive.
According to ABC 4 News, the teen was going through security at Salt Lake City International Airport, and claims that TSA agents were abrupt, rude and were the reason her pump stopped working correctly.
The girl is a type one diabetic, and says TSA screeners weren’t prepared to deal with her medical situation.
“I went up to the lady and I said, ‘I am a type one diabetic. I wear an insulin pump. I showed her the pump. I said, what do you want me to do? I usually do a pat down — what would you recommend?’ “
She showed her doctor’s note explaining that the pump was sensitive and shouldn’t go through a body scanner. Despite that, she says she as told to go through the scanner anyway. She figured when a person in a position of authority says to do something, you better do it — and thought they knew what they were talking about.
“So, I said, ‘Are you sure I can go through with the pump? It’s not going to hurt the pump?’ And she said ‘no, no you’re fine.’ “
After she went through the body scan with the pump on, she says the device stopped working correctly. Agents made the situation worse, she claims, when they didn’t know what to do about her juice and insulin, and insisted on doing a full body pat down anyway. Which, of course, is what she had requested in the first place, but now it was too late for her pump.
The news station asked TSA about the incident, and received an email saying:
“TSA is reviewing the passenger’s screening experience and will respond directly to the family. TSA works regularly with a broad coalition of disability and medical condition advocacy groups to help understand their needs and adapt screening procedures accordingly.”