New TSA rule sucks! [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: New TSA rule sucks!


wrke
03-16-2008, 05:12 PM
Well, on my way back from Acklins yesterday security in Nassau wouldn't allow my reels in my carry on. I've ALWAYS carried my reels in my carry on, but they said it was a new rule (I guess they're afraid of someone tying up a flight attendant). They sent someone to get my bag that was already checked and I put me reels in the checked bag. Because of some delays, my bag arrived later. You guessed it . . . my Danielsson LW8/12 and a Hardy Marquis salmon #1, plus lines, backing, cases are missing.
Something's got to be done.
Bill

JR SPEY
03-16-2008, 06:22 PM
Are you sure it was TSA? The Bahamas also runs its own security there and they've not allowed any fishing gear as carry-on for years. That doesn't mean that occasionally guys don't get through with fishing gear, but their policy is to not allow any. It's one reason I try to fish down there without going through Nassau. As far as I know TSA hasn't changed any rules and the rules they have are enforced the same way they do in the states. They usually object to the "string" that are on the reels, but not to the reels themselves. My guess is that you were subjected to Bahamas security rules.

wrke
03-16-2008, 06:39 PM
Are you sure it was TSA? The Bahamas also runs its own security there and they've not allowed any fishing gear as carry-on for years. That doesn't mean that occasionally guys don't get through with fishing gear, but their policy is to not allow any. It's one reason I try to fish down there without going through Nassau. As far as I know TSA hasn't changed any rules and the rules they have are enforced the same way they do in the states. They usually object to the "string" that are on the reels, but not to the reels themselves. My guess is that you were subjected to Bahamas security rules.
JR, I just checked the TSA website and they suggest flyreels in carry on, so you're right . . . it must be Bahamian security. Thanks.

striblue
03-16-2008, 07:07 PM
The last time I was down in Nassau... about 5 years ago, I just used the guide's equipment.... I had my reals as carry ons, but left the rods at home. The funny thing was that about 10 years ago, I had everything as checked and got it back..what I didn't get back. which was very interesting was two of my smoking pipes (I smoked a pipe in those days)... They left two others and took the two Dunhill pipes.... they apparently knew the difference in value between them. I think if I went down today , and planned on guide service I would use their eqipment or Fed Ex my equipement to the shop (NOT the Hotel).... then Fed Ex it back home...if I really wanted to use my stuff. I will never put any gear on a plane.

Dave17
03-16-2008, 09:22 PM
That's the worst Bill. I got your message. All 4 of my reels made it back.

What's the next step? Who is liable?

wrke
03-16-2008, 10:08 PM
That's the worst Bill. I got your message. All 4 of my reels made it back.

What's the next step? Who is liable?

I don't know who's liable. I'll file claims with USAir and TSA. I do have homeowner's insurance on the Hardy, but hadn't listed the Danielsson.

I've written the Minister of Tourism & Aviation and Minister of Security of Bahamas suggesting that they allow reels and inform airport security as such. I've copied them the TSA suggestions that "expensive reels should be packed in your carry-on" US Homeland Security doesn't feel reels are a risk. I've also asked them to write me on gov't letterhead that reels are OK in one's carry on and gently suggested that there are other bonefishing destinations that allow them.

I've ordered a new Danielsson, and new line and backing for my upcoming trip. I'll deal with the Hardy Salmon#1 when I see a good one for sale.

Glad yours are OK.

n1gdo
03-17-2008, 06:06 AM
I lost two of my favorite reels and lines and backing from my checked bags coming back through Nassau a while back also..

I was really angry ... called the airline and they sent me some monetary compensation... that took the sting out a little but I dont know how high they will go moneywise to help you... my equipment was not as expensive as yours.. they told me Nassau is notorious for this.... grrrrrrrrrrrr


Hope it works out...

Jere Eshelman
03-17-2008, 07:49 AM
About five or six years ago I went to Terrace, B.C. to fish the Skeena. All went well getting into Terrace, but on the flight out of Terrace I was not allowed to have my lined reels in my carry on. I was fortunate to get them home without incident, however, I swore that I would not return. I wrote letters to the Terrace Airport Authority stating that I found it hard to believe that a place that claims to be the fishing destination for so many reasons would have a restriction on carrying reels in carry-on luggage. I informed them that I would not return solely for this reason. I got no response.
Has anyone been through Terrace recently? Is this restriction still in force?

teflon_jones
03-17-2008, 07:57 AM
I went to the Bahamas about 3 years ago (see picture above ;) ) and brought all of my gear in my carry on including 2 rods, 2 reels, flies, and spinning tackle. I had no problems in the US or Bahamas on either end of my trip. The rod tubes were strapped to the outside of my backpack and the rest of the tackle was just stuffed in my backpack.

wrke
03-17-2008, 08:20 AM
I went to the Bahamas about 3 years ago (see picture above ;) ) and brought all of my gear in my carry on including 2 rods, 2 reels, flies, and spinning tackle. I had no problems in the US or Bahamas on either end of my trip. The rod tubes were strapped to the outside of my backpack and the rest of the tackle was just stuffed in my backpack.

Mr t_jones. I've fished the Bahamas twice a year for over 10 years and have always done the same with no problem, except for this last encounter in Nassau. Let's hope I can get Bahamian security to issue a change in policy.

JR SPEY
03-17-2008, 09:52 AM
It is quite common, even in the US, for reels with flyline and backing to be excluded from carry-ons. The TSA site says that expensive reels should be carried on, but says nothing about line. Your chances of getting through with line on your reels might, at best, be 80%. And it's far less than that when returning from other countries. I can think of at least six instances since 9/11 where someone I've flown with has had to turn around and check them. One of them got a little ugly about it and whipped a copy of the TSA regs at the agent and promptly ended up in a locked room long enough that he missed the flight. Several things you have to consider: TSA says you can carry on your rods, it doesn't say you can carry on rod tubes. You can carry on reels, but it says nothing about line. It even says you can carry on your delicate flies, but don't count on taking your 6/0 sailfish flies in your carry-on. There is also a statement on that site (in fact it appears more than once) that says that final decisions on all matters of carry-on belong to the agents on duty. That means, in effect, that they can deny anything they choose to deny. Incovenient for us---yep. But remember this is designed for our saftey and security, not our convenience.

reely
03-17-2008, 10:20 AM
A few years ago I had my reels pulled at Vancouver [twice] and Toronto once. I lost a like new Loop Seatrout out of Vancouver. I have flown in eastern Canada several times since with no issues. It's always an experience going through these security checks. The last thing to prevail is simple logic. Good luck in your efforts.

cc charlie
03-17-2008, 10:45 AM
My last trip to Acklins in Dec. I had no problems with the TSA in Boston or Bahamian Security going into Acklins even though I had my reels with line and my flies in my carryon. Returning out out on Nassau I carried on the reels minus their spools. Though they did take my forceps and a couple of spools of tippet.

Its definitly the Bahamian security and not the TSA. What are they doing with all the items they grab?

CC Charlie

Dave17
03-17-2008, 11:36 AM
Just a heads up to everyone.......

I have had numerous trips through Nassau and reels have always been somewhat of an issue. I've had them try and make me check them in the past. Usually I ask to speak to a manager and they let me through.

This time was different. There has definitely been a policy change since my last trip. All of the Bahamian security people made it clear to anyone carrying rod tubes that reels would not be allowed (Bill you and I went through different security lines, sounds like the guys in your line were asleep behind the wheel).

sean
03-17-2008, 11:59 AM
To clarify it is not reels that are the problem here...it is the lines, right?

I would be pissed if a reel with no line on it was not let through but can see why they would not let lines through. Do not necessarily agree with it but can see what 1000 or so yards of backing and fly lines could look like to non fishing security guards. I am sure they would not let anyone carrying that amount of loose line board a plane with it.

A 500-1000 reel if worth much more to me than the lines so why not invest in a way to strip the reels or just pack the spools with lines and carry on the reel body? I would never get put in the position again of having to hand over your reel to people at the gate.

Happened a few times to me coming out of providence and boston and lucky no reels were lost/stolen, now I strip the lines and have not had an issue with a bare reel.

-sean

Swalt
03-17-2008, 12:26 PM
It is the Bahamas equivalent of TSA that not allowing loaded reels through the check point. It is the last checkpoint you go through before you enter the international terminal.
I was forced to check my reels in November 2006 and posted that on several boards. I saw just recently where others, Dick Brown included, have been forced to check their reels or take the line off of them at this check point. It doesn't do any good to show them the TSA page saying reels are allowed either.
In the last 2 trips I have made I have had no trouble carrying on heading down, even through the Bahamasair check point, but I have checked on the way back.

Dave17
03-17-2008, 12:37 PM
You're right Sean, it's the line that is the issue.

JR SPEY
03-17-2008, 03:11 PM
I'm quite certain an empty reel would get through almost anywhere, although as I previously noted, that's never a guarantee. I've been with guys in Nassau, San Jose, CR, Guatemala City, Belize City, and Cancun where they have not been allowed to bring reels on that are lined. In Guatemala City there was a language issue as no one at security spoke English, but it seems the issue was the line. It can, and occasionally does, happen at US airports, too. I've had trouble at Newark and O'Hare. When I say I have trouble, I mean someone I'm traveling with as I haven't tried to carry on any fishing tackle since 9/11. The truth is it's just not worth the hassle. And I take 12-14 major fishing trips a year. And Sean, and others who have lamented the lack of standardization, that's intentional, as with standardization comes predictability, and that's what terrorists count on. That's why the mess we have now will likely never get better and could easily get a lot worse.

juro
03-17-2008, 04:47 PM
An angler should be allowed to bring a reel, but a concession to remove the line seems reasonable. But not the backing.

However, musicians are not required to remove strings from a guitar and they can carry a complex metal structure like a saxophone on board. In fact the extensible handle to my carry on could easily be sharpened into a deadly double edged knife and my cell phone could harbor a scrambling device or detonator for a bomb in the cargo bay.

A bag of dirty diapers could be a disguise for spreading a deadly ebola virus to passengers (it certainly smells like it) or people who are coughing their brains out on the back of my head could do it with only their body as a weapon.

Power cords and chargers for laptops and other devices are awesome strangling cords and the batteries could be projected at great speed by tying panty hose across the row and slingshotting them at uniformed flight attendants.

In fact one could tie their high top boots with kevlar twine which would be an ideal strangling string if that's the threat... but it seems we will never be allowed to carry a fishing reel on board not to mention the correlation between missing items of value :rolleyes:

Paxton
03-17-2008, 05:22 PM
Juro....I totally agree with your many points....but your detail of specific weapons made from common goods....is scaring me :hihi:
I'll be sure to give you an extra wide berth on the flats this year or at least sharpen one of my ferrules to a deadly point for protection :)
Ron

juro
03-17-2008, 05:37 PM
And thats just what I can pull off in spontaneous sarcasm... imagine what a real terrorist could do with everything else BESIDES my flyline that's allowed on board!

dickbrown
03-17-2008, 06:11 PM
As mentioned above, I had a similar "fly line" experience recently in NAS. Two of us traveling together but in different security lines were both directed to either strip the lines off the reels we had in our carry-on bags or check the entire carry-on bags as checked baggage. We both elected to strip the fly lines off--leaving them at the gate--and carried the reels--now with backing only--inside our carry-on bags without further incident.

I've traveled to the islands every year since 911 and only during the first post-911 flight did I ship all my tackle as checked baggage. On all other trips I've carried enough gear on board to fish, including at least one and sometimes two 5-piece rods, one or two reels (with fly lines), leaders, tippet, and flats clothing and wading shoes--all with no problems. I also carry about two dozen flies in a zip lock and show them as I pass through the TSA gate. All my other gear including 4-piece rods, back-up reels, flies, tools, spare lines etc. goes in my checked baggage.

Like many others posting here, I don't have a problem with the TSA procedures and the need for them to protect us all. I do sometimes lament the inconsistency of their enforcement, but, in general, I try to work within the guidelines. I know others have had the reel and fly line issue come up during outbound flights at Nassau and I just heard that Ted Lund had the same problem from outbound security leaving Guatemala on a recent trip. I have not, as yet, heard of any fly line restriction problems occurring for travelers leaving the US. So for now, I'll likely start stripping my lines off on return trips and see if that satisfies the issue.

For those who suggest shipping all fly gear as checked baggage, I understand their choice. But I am not willing to take the risk of getting to my destination without enough gear to fish. So I take a different risk, knowing I may encounter carry on problems and have to check additional gear at the gate or even risk losing an item.

I guess the best thing all of us who travel by air to our favorite fishing spots can do is post our incidents on forums like this one, so we can all stay as up to date as possible on the changing security regulations and the changing interpretations of the rules at different destinations. That way, hopefully, we can each pack our stuff to meet whatever risk profile we choose to undertake.

Dick

wrke
03-17-2008, 06:54 PM
All the comments (Juro, you make me smile) are a help . . . I've spent a whole day writing USAir, TSA, Bahamian government Ministers, talking with insurance agents, doing searches, etc and am still upset . . . but I'll get over it. Obviously, I'll change my flight/packing habits (perhaps even my destinations) in the future. Thanks for all the comments and the education . . . this is a great site. I think I'll drive to Green Turtle next month.
Bill

catspaw
03-18-2008, 07:46 AM
I've been going to the Bahamas for several years. On the leg down I carry all my rods-all 4 piece now-, I carry one reel and one box of flies, I check usually two other reels and more fly boxes. On the way home I check everything except the rods. I've never had a problem either way, but I avoid Nassau at all costs. I'll pay extra plane fare to aviod that hellhole.

mugsy
03-18-2008, 11:10 PM
Nassau is definitely the problem. Two trips to the Bahamas this year, one from Acklins thru Nassau on Bahamas air - no fly reels allowed; one to Eleuthera direct from Fort Lauderdale on Continental - no problems. Leaving Eleuthera, security opened my rod case, looked at the reel I had in the case (with line), put it back and didn't say a word.

I'll add my pet peave to Juro's list: soda cans. I can make a razor sharp knife out of a coke can in less than a minute, yet the flight attendents hand these potential weapons out to the passengers!!! DUH! The lack of consistency and the thoughtless approach of TSA destroys the credibility of a very important program.