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TSA delays pocketknife policy

The Transportation Security Administration is putting off a scheduled change to the list of banned items for air travelers.

Last month, the TSA said people traveling on airplanes could bring small knives on board starting Aprli 25. For now, they are grounding that idea.

As travelers walked in to the Santa Barbara Airport on Tuesday morning, a security recording could be heard on outside speakers.

“The TSA has limited the items that you may carry through the screening checkpoint,” said the recorded voice.

For those travelers taking a trip this week, keep your pocketknives at home.

The TSA said Tuesday, it will hold off on allowing items like small knives on board. This is a change of heart from last month’s controversial decision.

“They’re delaying that, the implementation of that new policy in order to get some more input from some of those concerned stakeholders,” said Tracy Lincoln, airport operations manager.

The halt will also allow for continued crew training on the issue. However, a TSA employee and a pilot told NewsChannel 3, they hope that pocketknives are never allowed on a planes.

Travelers at the airport said TSA should not only postpone, but keep the ban the same.

“I think they should continue to hold that. I think a pocketknife could be used as a weapon. I don’t want to be on a flight where the airline stewardess or the crew can be held hostage. So, I don’t think they should allow pocketknives,” said Tina McGinley, on her way back to Baltimore.

“I think they should be packed with your luggage and taken away, but no, I don’t think you should be allowed to take knives on a plane,” said Kaylee Worthen, after her trip from Utah.

The airport and its police officers will have to wait and see if the policy changes.

TSA employees screen both luggage and passengers, but it’s the airport that provides law enforcement that respond when someone has a prohibited item.

If small knives were allowed, that would mean less call for police, but some passengers said they’d be uncomfortable.

“People are pretty good about it but it still happens more than you might think,” said Lincoln.

As of now, the TSA has not said when it will make a decision on the policy.

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