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TSA must improve collecting and analyzing complaints, study says

December 02, 2012|By Hugo Martin
  • A travelers gets a pat-down search at John Wayne Airport.
A travelers gets a pat-down search at John Wayne Airport. (Mark Boster/Los Angeles…)

The Transportation Security Administration screens about 1.8 million passengers per day at more than 450 airports across the country.

But when passengers gripe about the security process, the TSA doesn’t have a consistent way to collect and act on those complaints.

That was the assessment of the U.S. Government Accountability Office, which released a report last week after studying the way the TSA gathers and analyzes passenger complaints.

For example, passengers can register complaints through the TSA website, on comment cards at airport checkpoints, in conversations with TSA supervisors and through letters and phone calls to agency offices, among other ways.

Quiz: Test your knowledge about airport security

But the GAO said the TSA doesn’t analyze all of that data because its too hard to consolidate.

“A process to systematically collect information from all mechanisms, including standard complaint categories, would better enable TSA to improve operations and customer service,” the report said.

The TSA’s response? The agency agreed with nearly every fix recommended by the GAO.

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Follow Hugo Martin on Twitter at @hugomartin

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