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Triggering Metal Detectors

Last night was the first time I've flown in two and a half months. My watch, belt buckle, and shoes all set off the metal detector, so I received the personal attention of a now-federalized airport security worker. Now, I should have been smart and put my watch in my jacket pocket when it went through the x-ray machine -- but my belt buckle and my shoes? I can't think of a belt buckle not made of metal, and my shoes were Rockports, which I didn't think would have any metal reinforcing strips. So...

How about a branding program for non-detector triggering clothing and accessories? Some sort of clothing industry council could work on it with the Department of Homeland Security. "FlyReady," maybe, or "WalkOn." There would be a logo associated with it. Clothing and accessories bearing the logo would be certified to have been tested using DHS metal detection equipment and found not to set it off. Shoes could use highly durable plastics as reinforcement. Belt buckles, cuff links, and other jewelry could be made of carbon fiber (which would be cool in its own right). Watches? I don't know. Will the metal in a watch battery inevitably trigger a detector? It may be a lost cause... but we can just get used to taking off our watches, I suppose.

The clothing and accessory industries should be all over this -- it's a chance to sell replacement merchandise to people with disposable income. As for DHS, from their standpoint, it would be a great way to show their concern for the convenience of the traveling public.


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