[WWI] The risks of books on airplanes

ernest thomas reason108 at hotmail.com
Mon Aug 29 23:51:34 EDT 2011

From: pezo8481 at bellsouth.net

     Being a member of several on-line aviation modeling groups isn't a "qualifier".  I'm not saying that Vance Gilbert was not hassled.  I'm just saying that I believe there is more to the story than he posted.
Of course, there's always another side to every story. 
But that doesn't automatically mean the other side invalidates the first.
I've experienced, first hand, idiotic behavior and policies in air transport security way before 9-11, and heard worse from a friend who flys airliners. 
So much so that I'm inclined to take Vance Gilbert's, who I don't know from Adam, account at face value. 
As for the issue of airline personel destroying our models, I'm not sure what to say about that. Could it be that no one has bothered to consult a lawyer over a broken model?
Think about it.
If a passenger was transporting.... a piccolo, or a violin,  priceless or not, and the flight attendants destroyed it by storing it improperly when there's no legitimate reason the passenger couldn't have held it in his hands on his lap, then the airline should have to pay replacement cost. Right? 
And if it was a Stradivarius or some such instrument, then it would be a slam dunk case. No one would expect the owner of that instrument to hand it over to a flight attendant to be stored in the cargo compartment, or anywhere else out of his or her sight. Even supposing a violin case wouldn't fit in the overhead, a violin weighs almost nothing. Out of the case, it would present no legitimate safety issue held on a passenger's lap. They don't make you stow the book you're reading during take off, right? If you've never held a violin in your hands, trust me; a hard cover edition of any of the Harry Potter books flying through the cabin during turbulence is more dangerous than a violin, or even a viola. A piccolo? Eh.. maybe. It's metal. But the odds of that flying through the cabin are as good as the odds for the book. 
So if you couldn't legitimately be asked to hand over a priceless violin, or stow the book you're reading during take off, then why should you be asked to hand over your model airplane? And why should the airline be exempt from damages if they destroy it? 
And if security wants to disassemble your model to see what kind of explosive all those weird, photo-etched parts that showed up in the xray are attached to, I think you should have the option of saying, "No thanks, I'll walk", and get a refund for your ticket. 
War on terror or not, we shouldn't be subjected to having our ever so plainly harmless personal possessions destroyed, without even due process for compensation. 
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