Frequent flier Cathy Kruzic, 58, sets off alarms every time she goes through airport security. The Denver public relations consultant’s titanium knee triggers metal detectors, meaning lengthy waits for a secondary screening.
During the spring travel season, many airline passengers with joint replacements will have similar experiences. Transportation Security Administration spokeswoman Carrie Harmon is sympathetic but says security, not expediency, is the agency’s number one priority.
“If an alarm sounds when you walk through a detector, we must resolve that alarm,” she says.
The good news: Full-body imaging is being tested at 20 airports and eventually may make pat-downs obsolete. Until then, Harmon recommends “bionic” passengers allow an extra 30 minutes to clear security.