September 12, 2006
Serious Security

I'm sitting in Frankfurt Airport on my way home from Amsterdam. After landing in Frankfurt, I went through Passport Control and then had to go through another security checkpoint.

This checkpoint was serious.

I was told to remove everything from my pockets, including wallet, passport, everything. Case, computer, and my shoes also went through the x-ray. I was then hand searched instead of going through a metal detector. In fact, there were no metal detectors at all. Everyone was hand searched. The hand search was extremely thorough. I've been searched by the police before, and this was even more complete than that. They checked everywhere including inside my belt and the soles of my feet. Most of the time I feel it would be trivial to slip something by security, but not this time.

Once that was complete, they went through my bags and found a small bottle of saline and another of eye drops. Both are OK to travel with, but they made me squirt them on my hand to show them what they looked like.

After finding the liquides, they then pulled out all my electronic gear to look at closely. Power supplly, cables, etc. It all came out for inspection. Next, the pulled my mobile phone out and walked over to the explosives detector. They swabbed down the phone to check for any explosives.

Only after that exhaustive search was I allowed to proceed to my plane. Remember, this is after my first security screening in Amsterdam. Also, everyone was was undergoing the same process.

Usually I feel that airport security is more theater than actual security, but not so today. The security at Frankfurt Airport was rigorous and yet the staff carried thing sout pleasantly, explaining to me everything as it happened.

When I think about the airport security in the US, it seems almost childlike in compairison.

OK, time to go catch my plane.

Posted by michael at September 12, 2006 03:45 AM


I was in India last November and the airport security there was similarly thorough. They had metal detectors and the like, but everybody was hand searched and questioned. This wasn't just at major international airports either, this was happening at little remote regional airports. It certainly made me better about flying.

I'm always in amazement at the so called security at LAX. Having to take my luggage to a second line and then "claim it" by pointing it out to a security guard after it gone through a x-ray machine doesn't put my mind at rest as much a real search!

Posted by: Miles [] on September 12, 2006 9:27 AM

They will catch one terrorist with some explosives up hit butt and the next thing you know every passenger will be getting body cavity searches.

Posted by: Bribo [] on September 14, 2006 5:47 AM
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