TSA and travelling with batteries

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In article <pupVd.42236$Rl5.23902@bignews4.bellsouth.net>, Eric Miller
<ericmiller@cox-internet.com> wrote:

> > 12 to 20 bucks a set of 4. My camera uses four, each flash unit uses
> > four. An extra set for each plus a spare set for contingencies, and
> > you're on 16 EXTRA batteries, plus those in the devices. A total of 7
> > sets. Confiscate just 3 sets and you're at $45 or more.
>
> OK, I don't know where you are, but at $12-20 for four batteries, I'd guess
> that you are paying way too much. Since the original poster seems to be from
> the US, I was addressing what I expect his costs to have been. If anyone is
> paying $20 for a set of four rechargeable batteries in the US, they are
> getting ripped off. The most I pay anywhere is $14 for a set of eight, brand
> name (Energizer), 2300 mAh, NIMH batteries.

when travelling and visiting an unfamiliar city (and perhaps not even
in the usa), the typical person probably does not know where to go to
get good deals on batteries there. and even if they did, they might
not want to spend their vacation time driving around trying to find
such a deal (and assuming they rented a car) and missing out on photo
opportunities while doing so.

realistically, if batteries are confiscated, replacing them can easily
be $12-20 per set.
 
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On 2 Mar 2005 09:51:58 -0800, "AlJ" <al_johnson1@yahoo.com> wrote:

>Batteries not banned. They felt I had too many. Afraid I might hook
>up with the other person with whatever other components might be needed
>to cause problems. Not sure what constitutes too many.

This has been going on since WWII if not longer, and happens
frequently. When my father used to travel to SA frequently, he'd carry
a few packs of batteries extra, unopened, knowing they'd get taken.
Cheap at the cost.
In many couyntries, batteries are hard to come by, and are expensive.
Airport employees (especially customs) have a very good oppurtinity to
get a few, and sell them later, by simply taking them, knowing the
losers won't complain too much.
This isn't a First World country we're talking about.
--
Bill Funk
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On Wed, 02 Mar 2005 14:04:11 GMT, Owamanga <nomail@hotmail.com> wrote:

>On 2 Mar 2005 04:46:21 -0800, "AlJ" <al_johnson1@yahoo.com> wrote:
>
>>I recently visited Belize. We flew from Washington Dulles. I had 3
>>cameras and an assortment of batteries. The Minolta uses AA so I had
>>several charged and ready. The lady at security commented but didn't
>>do anything.
>>
>>When we left Belize, they too commented. They confiscated half of my
>>AA batteries and busted up the sets. I figure they cost me $50 in
>>batteries. Some are left as full sets but others are 1-1600, 1-1800,
>>1-2100, etc. No warning no anything.
>
>Send an email to your local congressman asking him to write to their
>government demanding the return of your kit. Your tax dollars pay for
>these people, so get them to do some useful harassing once in a while.

Right.
"What batteries? They are not illegal to bring in, and thus none were
taken."
>
>>I suppose next time I will leave them in my checked luggage on the way
>>home but really like to carry them when I'm leaving town.
>
>Good idea.
>
>>I guess we're all safer
>
>Sadly this is not the case. You might *feel* safer, but personally, I
>don't think it's worth the hassle.

--
Bill Funk
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Ha, the dreaded TSA.
Anybody seen this:

--Lost Bank of America Backup Tapes Contain Federal Employees' Personal Data
(26/25 February 2005)
Bank of America has revealed that it has lost backup tapes that contain
personal data,
including Social Security numbers and account information, of 1.2 million
federal employees.
Band of America Spokeswoman Eloise Hale said there is no evidence the tapes
or the data they contain have been used, and that the tapes are presumed
lost.
Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) says he was told it is likely the tapes were
stolen from a commercial airliner by baggage handlers in December.

"Owamanga" <nomail@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:lphb215hkvvrcuj8l79v2u944iq4vjc05t@4ax.com...
> On 2 Mar 2005 04:46:21 -0800, "AlJ" <al_johnson1@yahoo.com> wrote:
>
> >I recently visited Belize. We flew from Washington Dulles. I had 3
> >cameras and an assortment of batteries. The Minolta uses AA so I had
> >several charged and ready. The lady at security commented but didn't
> >do anything.
> >
> >When we left Belize, they too commented. They confiscated half of my
> >AA batteries and busted up the sets. I figure they cost me $50 in
> >batteries. Some are left as full sets but others are 1-1600, 1-1800,
> >1-2100, etc. No warning no anything.
 
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"Doug" <dougcutler@mindspring.com> wrote in message
news:DCkVd.3946$wy3.3616@newsread3.news.atl.earthlink.net...
> Ha, the dreaded TSA.
> Anybody seen this:
>
> --Lost Bank of America Backup Tapes Contain Federal Employees' Personal
> Data
> (26/25 February 2005)
> Bank of America has revealed that it has lost backup tapes that contain
> personal data,
> including Social Security numbers and account information, of 1.2 million
> federal employees.
> Band of America Spokeswoman Eloise Hale said there is no evidence the
> tapes
> or the data they contain have been used, and that the tapes are presumed
> lost.
> Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) says he was told it is likely the tapes
> were
> stolen from a commercial airliner by baggage handlers in December.
>

And WTF does this have to do with the TSA?

TSA are not "baggage handlers." "Baggage handlers" are the ramp workers who
are airline employees.
 
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"Quaoar" <quaoar@tenthplanet.net> wrote in message
news:HYGdnRr8kNzlVbjfRVn-hw@comcast.com...
> PSsquare wrote:
> > AIJ wrote relative to batteries the following:
> >
> >> Some are left as full sets but others are 1-1600, 1-1800,
> >> 1-2100, etc.
> >
> > What are you talking about? I have no idea what 1-1600 means, for
> > example.
> >
> > PSsquare
>
> He's left with a single 1600 milliamp-hour AA battery from a set of
> four...
>
> Q
>
Oh, now it is clear. This is why I was taught in engineering school to
include the units and use proper English- one 1600 milliamp-hour etc. Well,
if the issue needs explaining on a newsgroup, then it reasons that airport
screeners in a fairly undeveloped country would be totally unaware of the
problem. It has only been in the last two years that airport screeners in
the USA understand film speed.

Thanks,

PSsquare


>
 
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mAh even... ;-)

Guy

AlJ wrote:
> The lady was trained by TSA to do this. It wasn't an issue with
> Belize. She explained herself clearly and was apologetic. She said
> TSA audits them every 2 months. I really didn't have an issue with
> her. The fact that eyebrows weren't raised in the past appears not to
> matter. This is a fairly new issue.
>
> I agree that i could have taken one set of batteries and put the rest
> in checked baggage. I would have been stuck though if the baggage
> didn't get there. I don't think I could have replaced them anywhere I
> was.
>
> Sorry about the confusion on the 1-1600 MAH, etc information when I
> was talking about sets.
>
> My main issue was the ever changing security rules.
 
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You should be thankful that they confiscated your batteries! It they hadn't
your plane might have been highjacked!!!

KB



"AlJ" <al_johnson1@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:1109767581.110874.267350@g14g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
>I recently visited Belize. We flew from Washington Dulles. I had 3
> cameras and an assortment of batteries. The Minolta uses AA so I had
> several charged and ready. The lady at security commented but didn't
> do anything.
>
> When we left Belize, they too commented. They confiscated half of my
> AA batteries and busted up the sets. I figure they cost me $50 in
> batteries. Some are left as full sets but others are 1-1600, 1-1800,
> 1-2100, etc. No warning no anything.
>
> I suppose next time I will leave them in my checked luggage on the way
> home but really like to carry them when I'm leaving town.
>
> I guess we're all safer but I'm poorer and irritated.
> Al
>
 
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AlJ wrote:

> Batteries not banned. They felt I had too many. Afraid I might hook
> up with the other person with whatever other components might be needed
> to cause problems. Not sure what constitutes too many.


Hi...

Wonder if that number might not be enough to reach
12 volts (with them in series)

Just thinking that 12 volts is the normal operating
voltage of many electronic devices.

Ken
 
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On 2 Mar 2005 11:33:50 -0800, "Charlie Self" <charliediy@aol.com>
wrote:

>Eric Miller comments:
>
>$50 in batteries. For what I currently pay for batteries, that would be
>
>about 25-50 batteries. I'd have probably been a little concerned about
>that
>many batteries too.
>
>12 to 20 bucks a set of 4. My camera uses four, each flash unit uses
>four. An extra set for each plus a spare set for contingencies, and
>you're on 16 EXTRA batteries, plus those in the devices. A total of 7
>sets. Confiscate just 3 sets and you're at $45 or more.

Take off your sock, load it up with batteries and you've got a device
that can kill a man with two strikes. TSA are overly worried about
your shoes, but you never have to demonstrate the tensile strength (or
lack of) of your socks.

Still, that can be said of many things they do let you take on-board.

Iv'e done some extensive calculations into this and come to the
conclusion that the TSA overreacts 99.999999991332% of the time, and
in every case where an item has to change hands, they *take* something
from the victim, but never *give* anything to anybody. Given that you
pay their wages, it's employee theft.

--
Owamanga!
 
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Eric Miller writes:

OK, I don't know where you are, but at $12-20 for four batteries, I'd
guess
that you are paying way too much. Since the original poster seems to be
from
the US, I was addressing what I expect his costs to have been. If
anyone is
paying $20 for a set of four rechargeable batteries in the US, they are

getting ripped off. The most I pay anywhere is $14 for a set of eight,
brand
name (Energizer), 2300 mAh, NIMH batteries

I'm in the U.S. And I can find 2300 mAh NiMH Energizers here for a set
of FOUR for about ten bucks, but for other brands, including Quest and
Sanyo, I expect to pay a bit more. Dropping the cost to my lowest
estimate, $12, still leaves $48 for four sets. You must do a lot of
shopping around for price on batteries. I don't, but, then they are
items that only need replacement every four or five years, usually one
set at a time.

I still can't see the rationale TSA is using. But, then, I haven't been
able to see the rationale they used every since the last time they
screwed up re-packing my luggage and ruined a couple things for me. And
I do hope they enjoyed my last return trip when someone sorted my dirty
underwear into the clean clothing and left it there.
 
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nospam responds:
when travelling and visiting an unfamiliar city (and perhaps not even
in the usa), the typical person probably does not know where to go to
get good deals on batteries there. and even if they did, they might
not want to spend their vacation time driving around trying to find
such a deal (and assuming they rented a car) and missing out on photo
opportunities while doing so.

realistically, if batteries are confiscated, replacing them can easily
be $12-20 per set.

Yes. And I just spent a few minutes checking the Thomas web site.
Cheapest 2100 mAh Energizers are $6.97 in major multiples--for four,
not eight--and you really do need to add shipping to that.

If TSA is going to have asinine rules, and it is, it needs to publicize
those rules so it is possible to follow them. Maybe a reasonable 60 or
90 day time for rules changes. Of course, I'm sure the powers-that-be
see that as giving terrorists warning of measures to be taken, but,
hell, they've got TSA's number already, I'd imagine.
 
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On 2 Mar 2005 08:44:06 -0800, "AlJ" <al_johnson1@yahoo.com> wrote:

>The lady was trained by TSA to do this. It wasn't an issue with
>Belize. She explained herself clearly and was apologetic. She said
>TSA audits them every 2 months. I really didn't have an issue with
>her. The fact that eyebrows weren't raised in the past appears not to
>matter. This is a fairly new issue.

Why would the TSA have anything to do with this? Doesn't Belize run
their own airports? I don't think we let Belize tell us how to run our
airports. Was this lady an employee of the TSA?
The TSA is a uniquely US organization.
>
>I agree that i could have taken one set of batteries and put the rest
>in checked baggage. I would have been stuck though if the baggage
>didn't get there. I don't think I could have replaced them anywhere I
>was.
>
>Sorry about the confusion on the 1-1600 MAH, etc information when I was
>talking about sets.
>
>My main issue was the ever changing security rules.

--
Bill Funk
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On Thu, 03 Mar 2005 09:06:53 -0700, Big Bill <bill@pipping.com> wrote:

>On 2 Mar 2005 08:44:06 -0800, "AlJ" <al_johnson1@yahoo.com> wrote:
>
>>The lady was trained by TSA to do this. It wasn't an issue with
>>Belize. She explained herself clearly and was apologetic. She said
>>TSA audits them every 2 months. I really didn't have an issue with
>>her. The fact that eyebrows weren't raised in the past appears not to
>>matter. This is a fairly new issue.
>
>Why would the TSA have anything to do with this? Doesn't Belize run
>their own airports? I don't think we let Belize tell us how to run our
>airports. Was this lady an employee of the TSA?
>The TSA is a uniquely US organization.

Rules are different for U.S. Flag carriers even overseas.
********************************************************

"A nice man is a man of nasty ideas."

_Introductions to History of the Reformation_
Jonathan Swift
1667-1745
 
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In article <6dde21pifqs26lmh14dnfas7u46l1pu43h@4ax.com>, Big Bill
<bill@pipping.com> wrote:

> On 2 Mar 2005 08:44:06 -0800, "AlJ" <al_johnson1@yahoo.com> wrote:
>
> >The lady was trained by TSA to do this. It wasn't an issue with
> >Belize. She explained herself clearly and was apologetic. She said
> >TSA audits them every 2 months. I really didn't have an issue with
> >her. The fact that eyebrows weren't raised in the past appears not to
> >matter. This is a fairly new issue.
>
> Why would the TSA have anything to do with this? Doesn't Belize run
> their own airports? I don't think we let Belize tell us how to run our
> airports. Was this lady an employee of the TSA?
> The TSA is a uniquely US organization.

flights bound for the usa need to adhere to the tsa guidelines. so yes,
the tsa does tell them how to run the show.
 
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Big Bill wrote:

>
http://www.tsa.gov/interweb/assetlibrary/Permitted_Prohibited_8_23_2004.pdf

This document says the list is not "all-inclusive". It goes on to say
that "the screener may also determine that an item on the permitted
chart is dangerous and therefore may not be brought through the
security checkpoint." Ergo, the list is operationally useless.

> If batteries were prohibited, wouldn't *all* of them be taken?

They are allowed to make it up as they go along: the regulations
basically say so.

> I bel;ieve this was a case of someone simply wanting some batteries,
> and using the position of being a security agent as a cover for the
> theft.

There are many people who believe this is the basic function of
government.

> As I wrote earlier, it's happened before.

Yeah, well, but it's also "happened before" that someone has posted a
bullshit story on USENET to solicit responses etc. What evidence do we
have in hand to support or reject either hypothesis in this case?
 
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On Thu, 03 Mar 2005 10:59:59 -0600, John A. Stovall
<johnastovall@earthlink.net> wrote:

>On Thu, 03 Mar 2005 09:06:53 -0700, Big Bill <bill@pipping.com> wrote:
>
>>On 2 Mar 2005 08:44:06 -0800, "AlJ" <al_johnson1@yahoo.com> wrote:
>>
>>>The lady was trained by TSA to do this. It wasn't an issue with
>>>Belize. She explained herself clearly and was apologetic. She said
>>>TSA audits them every 2 months. I really didn't have an issue with
>>>her. The fact that eyebrows weren't raised in the past appears not to
>>>matter. This is a fairly new issue.
>>
>>Why would the TSA have anything to do with this? Doesn't Belize run
>>their own airports? I don't think we let Belize tell us how to run our
>>airports. Was this lady an employee of the TSA?
>>The TSA is a uniquely US organization.
>
>Rules are different for U.S. Flag carriers even overseas.

Understood.
But is the TSA running security in Belize?
Batteries aren't listed in the TSA's list of Permitted-Prohibited
items:
http://www.tsa.gov/interweb/assetlibrary/Permitted_Prohibited_8_23_2004.pdf
If batteries were prohibited, wouldn't *all* of them be taken?

I bel;ieve this was a case of someone simply wanting some batteries,
and using the position of being a security agent as a cover for the
theft. As I wrote earlier, it's happened before.

--
Bill Funk
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Steve writes:

so I would assume the concern is only about
batteries shorting out and starting a fire (thus the issue with dive
lights).
Realistically that's extremely unlikely even with a few dozen batteries
unless
they're packed in foil, but the potential consequences of a fire on a
plane are
significant enough to warrant some minor paranoia. Limiting batteries
in carry on to
a couple of dozen spread through a couple of bags is probably a good
strategy.

But totally ignores the possibility of batteries improperly stowed in
the belly of the beast. Might they figure that fire in the baggage hold
from shorted out batteries is less serious than fire in the passenger
compartment?
 

steve

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Ron Hunter wrote:

> Thanks for the warning as my wife
> mentioned going there recently. How many batteries were you carrying?
> Is there some threshold?

I've seen several reports recently that the airlines are concerned about batteries
being left in dive lights and even regular flashlights, but so far I haven't seen any
problems with batteries, either in checked luggage or carry on. On a trip to
Micronesia a year ago I checked a suitcase with 96 AA and 16 C batteries, which
probably put me in the 99th percentile for how many batteries tourists carry with
them. TSA opened the suitcase, but only rummaged through it. On a trip to Honduras
last January my wife and I each had dive lights with 8AA batteries in them in our
carry on bags, and my camera bag had 12 AA NiMH, plus two batteries for the camera
(L-ion package that's about 2 AA size). We made 4 trips through security checkpoints
(Newark, Honduras, and twice in Houston). The camera bag did get rotated and run back
through the x-ray machine once, but nobody said a word about the batteries or looked
in any of the bags.

Assuming TSA is smart enough to figure that my wife and I could easily pool our
batteries, our itinerary suggests that if there is a threshold it's at least 28 AA
batteries. A couple of people with only a few batteries a piece would easily have
enough for timing devices or detonators, so I would assume the concern is only about
batteries shorting out and starting a fire (thus the issue with dive lights).
Realistically that's extremely unlikely even with a few dozen batteries unless
they're packed in foil, but the potential consequences of a fire on a plane are
significant enough to warrant some minor paranoia. Limiting batteries in carry on to
a couple of dozen spread through a couple of bags is probably a good strategy.

--
Steve

The above can be construed as personal opinion in the absence of a reasonable
belief that it was intended as a statement of fact.

If you want a reply to reach me, remove the SPAMTRAP from the address.
 

ALJ

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The cost of batteries isn't and wasn't the issue. I may have over
estimated the cost. Not a huge issue since I wasn't asking for replace
costs. The batteries were purchased over a period of time and I didn't
count how many. Some were old enough to be 1800mah.

Picture yourself going to an island where you couldn't easily replace
your batteries and having half confiscated. That is my issue. If I
go through security with a wine corkscrew, they'll take it. I know
that so I deal with it. Batteries? Who would have thought it?

Still waiting for TSA to respond to me email asking about this.
 
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