New Full Body Scanner at Palm Springs International Airport


The next time you fly out of Palm Springs, you could be asked to walk through a full body scanner when going through security.  The airport is now using the controversial technology.

Palm Springs now joins 78 other airports across the country already using the machines.

“This machine addresses a real need, the 9-11 Commission told us explosive detection devices at the checkpoint is essential to our success,” said TSA Spokesman Nico Melendez.

[Related: VIDEO: Screeners and other representatives from the TSA showed off the new technology Tuesday]

The TSA says passengers will be chosen at random to undergo the full body scans, which are raising privacy concerns.  The highly detailed images of scanned passengers are viewed in real time, by a TSA screener, sitting in a private room.

The passengers we spoke with don’t mind the extra scrutiny.

“Well I have mixed feelings about it, if its for security, if its going to help, I’m okay with it,” said Lawrence Schneider.

Scanning is optional.  However, those who opt out, will be required to undergo the TSA’s so called “enhanced pat down”, which caused a stir when the TSA first started using it in late October.

“We’re doing everything we can to keep passengers safe, if passengers don’t like it, it is really the world we are living in,” said Melendez.

Other passenger concerns with the devices have to do with radiation.

The TSA says the amount of radiation generated by the scanner is equivalent to that of a two minute cell phone call.

The TSA says the devices are also being set up at smaller airports like Palm Springs, since they feed into major airports.

A second full body scanner will be set up at the airport sometime next year.

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