The TSA wants to know if you’re hot.
At least, they may soon, according to a report by a major news outlet.
As we attempt a return to normalcy, questions abound. And here’s one: Amid a pandemic where government is preaching 6-foot separation, how do people do things together like ride in subways? Or buses? Or…planes?
As reported by The Wall Street Journal, the Transportation Security Administration is planning to check the temperature of all travelers getting aboard hollow metal tubes to be shot across the sky.
“Details of the plan are under review by the White House and are subject to change,” the Journal relays. The program purportedly involves roughly a dozen airports, but it “couldn’t be determined which airports will initially have the new scanning procedures.”
And the whole plan’s coming in at a taxpaying bargain — only $20 million.
According to TWSJ, arlines have been wanting this for a while, as part of a multidimensional approach toward keeping all the sickies off board. And — subsequently — encouraging people to buy those pricey tickets without reserve.
As per the article, air travel demand has dropped more than — get ready for it — more than 90%.
However, the TSA doesn’t wholly want to dabble in the medical and diseased:
People familiar with the matter said the TSA has raised concerns about taking on responsibility for temperature scanning, believing it doesn’t fall within the scope of its security mission. Its employees also have been exposed: Over 500 have tested positive for Covid-19 and six have died.
And there’s been pushback from the public-travel agency concerning the report. They’re not confirming anything, as they made clear in a statement Friday:
“At this time, no decision has been made regarding specific health screening measures at airports.”
As observed by The Daily Wire, some legislators are hesitant about the idea. Who says medical moves are within the TSA’s purview?
Democratic Missisippi Rep. Bennie G. Thompson — chair of the House Committee on Homeland Security — put it this way:
“I cannot find any law that gives TSA the authority to perform temperature checks as reported.”
To Bennie’s way of thinking, the White House “[shouldn’t] put these front-line workers in further danger in order to provide passengers a potential false sense of safety.”
If the airlines hope to do much business any time soon, it certainly does seem the public’s going to have to be reassured.
The Wire notes the federal government’s turned over a whopping $50 billion to help ’em through a veritable collapse of their industry.
And the companies offering a ride in the sky are doing what they can to keep flyers away from one another:
Airlines are taking steps to ensure social distancing on their planes, with most carriers saying they’ll operate at 50%-60% occupancy. Delta Air Lines is blocking middle seats, but others plan to charge more for the empty seat. Frontier Airlines announced this month a “More Room” fee running until the end of August, in which a passenger could pay from $39 each way to guarantee the middle seat stays open.
Will taking temperatures help anything? What if you’re asymptomatic?
I’ve said it before: As did 9/11, the coronavirus appears poised to split time in half. The world — on the ground and in the air — may never be the same.
Personally, the prospect of having my temperature taken before I get on a plane — upon which I have to stay masked and away from all other people — sure brings to mind a dystopian Hollywood silver-screen spectacle.
But such is life in this bizarre Zombie Apocalypse.
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