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Dying woman was asked to lift bandages before flight to Hawaii

By Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 04:44 p.m. HST, Oct 09, 2012

SEATTLE » A leukemia patient making what she calls an "end-of-life" trip to Hawaii says she was embarrassed by security agents at the Seattle airport who refused her request for a private pat-down and made her lift her shirt and pull back her bandages..

But in a statement, TSA Northwest Region spokeswoman Lorie Dankers says the agency reviewed video from the security checkpoint where Michelle Dunaj was checked and determined that “screening procedures were followed.”

Dunaj says the encounter came as she was departing Seattle on Oct. 2 on what she called an “end of life” trip to Hawaii. She says she had to lift her shirt and pull back bandages in the security line and that an agent punctured a saline bag she was carrying. TSA says “at no point did a TSA officer open the passenger’s medically necessary fluids and the passenger was never asked to remove or pull off any bandages.”

Dunaj did not immediately return a call seeking comment on the TSA’s response. 

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false wrote:
Common sense and good judgement are indeed rare commodities these days.
on October 9,2012 | 09:40AM
false wrote:
Do away with TSA, start profiling. TSA is just another of the ever expanding Federal buerocracies that suck us dry. Another UNIONIZED group of public employees who do nothing but exist to torment us
on October 9,2012 | 02:30PM
64hoo wrote:
no we don't need to do away with tsa.we need that security, if all you men hate to be patted down after going through screening heres a solution an hour before going through security screening have 2 shots of jack daniels take a viagra and then ask for the cutest tsa agent to pat you down, that way you will enjoy being patted down.
on October 9,2012 | 05:30PM
Dragonman wrote:
Sounds like you just had two shos of J. Daniels. Would be nice if you added something to the blog.
on October 9,2012 | 06:13PM
HD36 wrote:
True, think of all the new Federal agencies that have been added to "protect" us, but look at how much of our liberties have been taken away.
on October 9,2012 | 11:13PM
Pocho wrote:
I also get picked on when boarding a flight, I do not walk properly due a neurological problem and having to go thru the body scan where they can see my personal private parts.
on October 9,2012 | 06:19PM
Manoa2 wrote:
I spoke to an ex-Navy Seal and a terrorism expert and security consultant about this. Here is what he told me-- under any protocol, you set the protocol and you do not vary it unless someone very senior approves it. There are many, many instances were common sense would say let the TSA agents make a decision on a common sense exception-- but that the problem is then an awful lot of decisions on exceptions would be made by TSA agents who are not trained to make those decisions and their definition of common sense does not equal that of a security expert. Furthermore if they were authorized to grant exceptions, then you risk someone "paying off" an agent to get by the protocol and bring material on board for a terrorist attack.
on October 10,2012 | 12:31AM
bender wrote:
Especially at TSA.
on October 10,2012 | 07:09AM
ghstar wrote:
There are some really aggressive TSA goons in Seattle. The place needs a good clean up
on October 9,2012 | 09:44AM
busterb wrote:
I think the ones that don't get TSA jobs are hired by Aloha Stadium to go through your personal bags looking for TUMS.
on October 9,2012 | 11:06AM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
No plane hijacking since 911.TSA is doing their ub.
on October 9,2012 | 03:17PM
serious wrote:
ghstar, you are right, I just left there to come home. I am 79--guess who gets pulled out of the line to get "patted down"?? They should profile--who the heck is/are the terrorists--certainly not white old guys nor 1/2 dead white women!!!!
on October 9,2012 | 11:07AM
IEBuzzin wrote:
Why does the TSA have so many idiots in their charge?
on October 9,2012 | 09:49AM
Publicbraddah wrote:
They used to be UH Board of Regents and Chancellors.
on October 9,2012 | 12:49PM
Bean808 wrote:
and one or two of them may have been a university president.
on October 9,2012 | 01:25PM
gth wrote:
For $9.99/hour, what do you expect!
on October 9,2012 | 10:03AM
Dragonman wrote:
I think starting pay is aroung 15/16 dollars an hour.
on October 9,2012 | 06:14PM
silvangold wrote:
OMG !! ~ WTH !! ~ WTH is the matter with TSA????????? Over and over they totally %&#* up! I say get rid of everyone of them at that airport .... they don't have common sense (if SOMEONE did, they they'd have stepped in) --- I can take the total inconvience when people who don't have any disabilities of CHILDREN are the ones getting 'put out' for safety .... but total stupidity is just that: STUPID.
on October 9,2012 | 10:24AM
kennie1933 wrote:
It's a really sad and frustrating story. But, by the same token, I would not want to be TSA agent, even if the pay was super good. Terrorists have no conscience and even use children as martyrs to carry bombs into a crowd. Yes, common sense should prevail and if Dunaj had all the proper documentation, and the airport had prior notice, she should not have gone through that. If not, I'd hate to be the TSA agent who allowed an innocent-lookiing terrorist in disguise blow up the plane!
on October 9,2012 | 11:20AM
Mikilai wrote:
on October 9,2012 | 01:45PM
Revelation wrote:
she requested a private screening, its TSA policy to NOT deny a request for a private screening, they did, TSA is at fault... it would be different if she didnt ask, but she did...
on October 9,2012 | 01:55PM
walaau808 wrote:
I get what everyone is up in arms about...but wasn't the TSA formed because of the actions of "normal" looking people back in 2001? Cut TSA some slack, and be glad that the headline doesn't have something to do with another hijacking and bombing instead of what we consider a huge inconvenience. I'd rather we all be inconvenienced then for TSA to use their own judgement as to who is or isn't a terrorist. Good grief!
on October 9,2012 | 11:23AM
waianae94 wrote:
But in this case, the TSA was not asked to ignore this woman. They had the option of doing a different type of screening and didn't do it. People shouldn't have to be dehumanized in order to be safe.
on October 9,2012 | 12:14PM
Shh wrote:
This is different. This person called ahead of time to let them know of her condition. They should of gave her the private screening. I'm sure she had all the proper documents to prove her condition but yet these TSA workers obviously do not know how to handle cases like this. They all need to be let go!
on October 9,2012 | 12:29PM
nitpikker wrote:
story said she called the AIRLINE. she should have asked if TSA would give her any trouble.
on October 9,2012 | 12:48PM
Revelation wrote:
is your mom a tsa agent?
on October 9,2012 | 01:51PM
copperwire9 wrote:
Nit, she ASKED for private screening. Read the article.
on October 9,2012 | 02:11PM
Usagi336 wrote:
Point is she was obviously a sick person who asked for a private screening and was not given one. TSA's fault all the way.
on October 9,2012 | 01:10PM
Revelation wrote:
TSA spokeswoman Ann Davis tells KOMO-TV it's against policy to deny a private screening for passengers who request it
on October 9,2012 | 01:52PM
kainalu wrote:
"Be afraid! Be very afraid! The terrorists are coming!" Don't look now, but we've slowly morphed into a Police State. Orwell tried to warn us.
on October 9,2012 | 11:33AM
coachal808 wrote:
TSA: Too Stupid A...., common sense, call your manager and help this lady out!
on October 9,2012 | 11:56AM
Shh wrote:
That is awful and I hope they get to the bottom of this. That is uncalled for and she should be compensated big time!
on October 9,2012 | 12:26PM
nitpikker wrote:
all you complainers, i would rather TSA pull me aside than get on a plane with some fanatic!! or maybe you all have forgotten about 9/11!! with all the tricks that terrorists have up their sleeves, i wouldn't want any of you working as TSA agents!! you'd let everyone with a cast,sling,bandages,etc. board with cursory inspection! why didnt she or the airline wonder about her saline bag and her bandages?
on October 9,2012 | 01:04PM
Mikilai wrote:
on October 9,2012 | 01:46PM
Revelation wrote:
you must also work for TSA or your dad does...
on October 9,2012 | 01:54PM
Revelation wrote:
umm, broski.... the woman requested a private pat down, but the TSA agents declined... the TSA policy is that if a passenger requests a private pat down it must be granted, its not optional for the TSA agents to oblige... that is all the information you need to determine the TSA is at fault, when you have idiots working, they WILL mess things up... its like the people who cant speak english but work at fast food joints in the drive through... things are bound to get messy... also ive never heard of explosives being thin enough to hide under bandages... or invisible to be put in a saline bag... she didnt have a cast, nor a sling... either way all of that couldve been handled if they just granted her with a private screening, like they were suppose to... TSA screwed up once again, no ifs, ands, or buts...
on October 9,2012 | 01:49PM
copperwire9 wrote:
READ the article. SHE ASKED for a private screening.
on October 9,2012 | 02:12PM
waianae94 wrote:
Nope. The other types of screening are effective. Think of people other than yourself.
on October 9,2012 | 04:48PM
Bean808 wrote:
I have always said that some of these TSA agent are poorly trained and cannot use any common sense whatsoever. For the most part most that I have encountered at the inter island terminal either going to the neighbor island or mainland with Hawaiian have be reasonably courteous but the ones on the mainland are a real different animal. They think they are there to impress someone. VERY discourteous.
on October 9,2012 | 01:24PM
hawaiikone wrote:
Every airport should have a sign up sheet asking for volunteers to pretend to be TSA agents and have all TSA agents go through mock lines with the volunteers harassing them. They really need a taste of their own idiocy.
on October 9,2012 | 02:44PM
Kokoy wrote:
Video by TSA is contrary to her statements. Just because this woman says this happened doesn't make it so. From the article: "TSA says “at no point did a TSA officer open the passenger’s medically necessary fluids and the passenger was never asked to remove or pull off any bandages.” "
on October 9,2012 | 04:52PM
64hoo wrote:
she says they did do that to her, and tsa said they did know such thing, if there was witnesses they would have backed her up so you can't make judgements on what she says or tsa says. we just have to wait and see what really happened.
on October 9,2012 | 05:14PM
I do understand the TSA person was doing his job, but they have no common sense. I had taken my wallet out and this TSA female took my wallet and looked inside to see what I had (money, pictures, charge cards)...is that right? I TOOK MY WALLET AND YELLED AT HER, "GIVE ME BACK MY WALLET". Boy, we need to get rid of ignorance
on October 9,2012 | 09:49PM
HD36 wrote:
The next step is implanting a chip in our body for identification and our "safety"
on October 9,2012 | 11:19PM
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