TSA Brings All The Signage Of Skiing To Security Lines, None Of The Fun

The TSA is testing a new crowd management system at two airports in Denver and Salt Lake City that they hope will make the security process less troublesome. No, the new system isn’t less invasive or more security-sensible, but it does give families with kids/strollers/bags their own lane, both for their sanity and for ours. Early reports indicate families are happy with it but too many casual travelers think they’re experts and head to the black diamond lane, which is only for people who walk briskly and frown a lot.

From the TSA blog, where every TSA employee suspiciously writes in the same perfectly-punctuated, on-message style (this quote is from the man who heads TSA security operations in Salt Lake City, and clearly not from a PR flack):

The Green lanes are used primarily by families, who often feel stressed in the traditional lane trying to get through with their kids, strollers and other stuff. Often these folks haven’t gotten the proper level of attention they deserve. People who don’t travel much and groups also select this lane. We’ve dedicated more resources to get people through this lane quickly without making them feel pushed. The Blue lanes are for casual travelers who understand TSA procedures to a degree but may not travel all that frequently so they take a little more time. The black diamond lanes are for expert travelers who understand the system by the nature of traveling a lot and are totally prepared for the checkpoint.

One smart-assed commenter on a related Rocky Mountain News article asks, “Where’s the terrorist line?” We agree—that would solve a lot of problems, provided the cluelessly overconfident Blue travelers didn’t self-select for it and clog it up.

Halfway down a Denver Post story about the experiment is one of the saddest things we’ve read all week. Here’s a glimpse of the future of America—children indoctrinated from their earliest memories to accept The Way Things Are.

In the stroller were her sons, Christian, 4, and Wyatt, 2.

Wyatt was crying up a storm.

Asked if she thought the new system might benefit her and her kids, Clatterbuck said, “I hope so,” as the two well-trained little boys took off their shoes even though they were seated in the stroller.

Update: A helpful reader sent in a more useful version, which—if followed—would solve all of our security problems.


“Update on Black Diamond Pilot in Salt Lake City – and Now It’s in Denver Too” [evolution of Security] <-- That's the name of the TSA blog, seriously. And check out this subheading: "Terrorists Evolve. Threats Evolve. Security Must Stay Ahead. You Play A Part." !!!

“Color-coded screening takes off at DIA” [Denver Post]
“DIA security lines: Pick ’em” [Rocky Mountain News]
(Image: Jeff R.) (Thanks, Jeff!)