Chattanooga Metro Airport Incident Sparks Change in Child Security Process

Erica Green
April 22, 2008 - 12:29PM | Digg | Print Story | E-Mail Story | Font Size Families travelling at airports know traipsing through security is not fun with young kids but one parent describes his child's experience as more than traumatic.

Erica Green has the story of what some are calling airport security taken too far.

At the Chattanooga Airport a TV news anchor from a CW affiliate in Houston Texas stood in the security line watching as a TSA agent used a wand on his daughter and he got the whole thing on his cell phone camera."

We saw this video he captured and went to find out what parents and families thought.

"He's 3 years old and he's very sensitive and I do not believe that no matter how he was wanded he would freak out, I know he would," said Dianne Durham about her grandson.

Some say this is just another case of poor parenting and the parents should teach their children to know better.

"Well you're going to have children that panic and you just deal with it. I mean kids have you know they get scared and you just have to reassure them that that's ok it has to be done and it won't hurt them. They need to learn that," said Cheryl Buchwaller, mother of 2 children.

After this incident earlier this month at the Chattanooga Airport, the TSA is beginning to change their ways. They are putting a teddy bear over the wand to make it less intimidating for kids at airports starting in Houston Texas.

"I don't think that would help because they're scared anyway so adding another thing to it. I don't think it's the object, I think it's the process that;re going through that scares them," said Durham.

"I think they probably should do it because I know there are some crazy people out there that would maybe use a child to get something on the plane they shouldn't," said Buchwaller.

Some families and passengers we talked to say the action was excessive but security should always be in the forefront of your mind when you're traveling.

The TSA has not announced if it will use the teddy bear wands for children in Chattanooga. TSA also says it specifically trains officers to be gentle and respectful of children. Representatives say the officer you saw in the video acted correctly and does not face any punishments.

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