Monday, 31 January 2011

‘…confident within the surety of the regulations …’

Airport officials ordered a holidaymaker carrying a toy soldier onto a plane to remove its three-inch gun - because it was a safety threat.
/facepalm
Officials declared the moulded gun could not go on the plane and Mr Lloyd had to snap off the model weapon and then post it back to his home in Ontario.

He said: 'As the figurine's SA80 rifle was pulled from the box, the security search officer contacted her supervisor. The moulded SA80 could not pass.'
So this isn’t just one cretin who thinks ‘rules iz rules!’. She checked with her supervisor, who should have told her not to be such a cretin.

But no:
'My wife asked for a "reality check", explaining how this offending piece of sculptured moulding is a 9 inch painted model with a moulded and painted rifle that is part of the figure.

'The supervisor was confident within the surety of the regulations and said a "firearm" is a firearm and cannot pass.'
Unless it's disassembled into its component parts, of course, as Angry Exile points out. Then, no problem!

Still, now it’s in the open, fulsome apologies and retraining for…

Oh:
A spokeswoman for Gatwick Airport said: 'Items including firearms and items with the appearance of firearms are prohibited.
'There are lots of other reasons an item could be prevented from going through security, such as large items that do not fit in overhead lockers on the aircraft.'
This item is three inches long. Try again, love…

16 comments:

RAB said...

I couldn't help but think of the surreal humour of dear old Spike Milligan and the Goons when I saw this one.

"A firearm is a firearm". Well on this kind of impeccable logic, my photograph of a Fifty Pound note will get me that bottle of whiskey in the duty free shop surely?

I mean "money is Money" isn't it?

James Higham said...

We need a second amendment.

Angry Exile said...

"A firearm is a firearm."

Indeed, but since we're talking about a three inch model of a two and a half foot rifle the supervisor might as well have said that a novelty clown hat is a novelty clown hat. Are these people on something or do they just do because, fuck it, they can?

Rightwinggit said...

Rab:

I will get you a photograph of the bottle of whisky, and another photograph of the change.

Milligan rules.

Captain Haddock said...

A load of complete & utter rubbish ..

http://www.cps.gov.uk/legal/d_to_g/firearms/

Someone needs to get a firm grip of Airport Security Staff, preferrably by the lower scruff-band and explain the difference, in small, easy to understand words the difference between a "Firearm" and a Toy Soldier ..

Bunch of wankers ..

Inspector Lestrade said...

Last time I checked, the definition of a firearm was "any lethal barrelled weapon capable of discharging any bullet, shot or other missile. It includes any prohibited weapon, any component part of such a weapon, and any accessory to such weapon designed or adapted to diminish the noise or flash caused by the firing of the weapon."

Describing a three-inch long toy as a firearm? Madness. The simple truth is that airline security guards are now utterly power-pissed and abuse that power at every available opportunity, it's as simple as that.

RAB said...

He does indeed Rightwinggit ;-)

Captain, Airport security is where you end up if you are too thick to flip burgers for a living.

They have not caught one terrorist or prevented an attack since 9/11.

The shoe bomber got through, the pants bomber got through, only their innate fuckwittery prevented a nasty.

My wife has had 4 nail scissors confiscated in various airports now, having forgotten to take them out of her makeup bag, while I walk through happily with a pocket full of pencils, with which I could kill you in a minute!

There is just no rhyme or reason to their fuckin regulations at all.

Longrider said...

I suppose it's just as well I didn't bring back my collection of Napoleonic Figurines through airport security - what with all those muskets, rifles sabres and bayonets.

In using the term cretin, you were being too kind.

Longrider said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lynne said...

I wonder what would happen if they discovered something with the appearance of a brain?

Would being faced with the unknown send them into a group huddle?

Umbongo said...

The problem here is time. "Security" is something to get through on your way to a flight (or a bit of shopping - and then a flight). Whatever, your time's at a premium; the jobsworths are just putting in the hours. Accordingly, there is nothing in it for you to stand your ground. If I could be bothered (and Mrs U would let me) I'd argue the toss with the scum but, you know, life's too short.

I'd rather offer up my 125cc bottle of water than miss my flight - and they know this. If we had the time - and knew our legal position, as this bloke does, the jobsworths would be a mite more careful and, even, respectful. But, it's our time you see - not theirs: it'll never happen.

Trooper Thompson said...

Maybe they got confused between something that's small and something that's far away.

Wrinkled Weasel said...

There is a motivation here that confuses me. Security staff are there to administer, not enforce security. They have no actual powers of arrest do they? And yet, had this person attempted to ignore them and walk on, you can assume that they would have alerted the police. In these cases the police appear to be happy to play the game and will then detain the er, "suspect". The "suspect" misses the flight and a subsequent complaint gets them nowhere.

It's a low stakes game for them to play, but why they do it is a puzzle.

Thinking hard, my guess is that they are inappropriately trained. They are made to believe that all travellers have zero status in the transaction. What attracts them to the job in the first place must be the servant and master role, a role that is incredibly easy to brainwash people into accepting and also performing. Orders mesmerise people. Orders carry weight with idiots. Orders clarify and cut through the need to think,an action which many find difficult.

I have to say that it is years since I had this kind of trouble because I tend to make eye contact with people and be friendly and treat them like humans. Yes, I have had one or two morons to deal with, but gentle reasoning and an air of cooperation helps.

JuliaM said...

"I couldn't help but think of the surreal humour of dear old Spike Milligan and the Goons when I saw this one."

If it wasn't so potentially serious, it would indeed be laughable. Perhaps that's what the next one stopped should do - invite all fellow passengers to point and laugh?

Mind you, that's probably some sort of offence too.

" Are these people on something or do they just do because, fuck it, they can?"

You put people like that in positions of power over others, and what do you expect? As Inspector Lestrade points out, it's inevitable, where there are no consequences.

"In using the term cretin, you were being too kind."

Indeed!

"If we had the time - and knew our legal position, as this bloke does, the jobsworths would be a mite more careful and, even, respectful."

True enough. But maybe it'd only take a few people with the time on their hands, making a stand, to change things?

"Maybe they got confused between something that's small and something that's far away."

:D

"It's a low stakes game for them to play, but why they do it is a puzzle."

Perhaps there's some sort of 'detection' target for them?

Chalcedon said...

The killer is or loks like a firearm. What pillock drafted these rules? A picture of a firearm would be disallowed too I expect. This is utter madness and these imbeciles on duty have no discretion whatsoever or so it seems. I just dispair when I read stories like this. Especially when disassembled guns can be easily smuggled in. That's another story. Our gun laws run counter to the Bill of Rights of course.

Chalcedon said...

Rab, you are spot on about the pencil. A good shove into someone's eye and it's in their brain. Even a rolled up magazine can be a formidable weapon if you know how to use it. These rules at airports are stupid. How many liquid explosives are there? Actually very few and they are all very unstable. the would be bomber would have blown themselves up on the way to the airport almost certainly. And making explosives from liquids requires such things as ice baths which are not immediately available on planes. It's hard enough in a lab to make stuff like RDX let alone in a aircraft bog!