Going thru Security at JFK

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Jun 27th, 2012, 11:02 AM
  #1
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Going thru Security at JFK

We will be leaving from JFK, Terminal 4 flying Singapore Airlines early part of Sept and I'm just a wee bit anxious of going thru security, as we don't fly that often. My husband has metal in his leg due to an accident and just this year was diagnosed with liver cancer, which by the way, was found in early stages and removed. I'm thinking, he should not even think of going thru a body scanner. Would you shed some light on this and advise. Thanks, Sandy
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Jun 27th, 2012, 12:07 PM
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He will be required to have a pat down search.

I have a friend who is a frequent traveler. He had both knees replaced 2 years ago, and he says even a doctor's note doesn't stop the pad down.

http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/pat_downs.shtm
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Jun 30th, 2012, 04:15 AM
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Terminal 4 can either be quick or dreadful, depending on the time that your flight takes off. Singapore Airlines's flights usually leave around 10:00-11:00pm at night; consider that a blessing. They are one of the last flights to leave to Europe from that terminal except for a Virgin Atlantic to Heathrow and a Lufthansa to Munich. This means that everyone else will have left before you, and security shouldn't be as bad as it would be if you were, say, flying Lufthansa to Frankfurt and then connecting to Singapore Airlines. Flights directly to Asia usually require 40 min before boarding, and Europe requires 30 min before boarding, so as long as you're in the security line 90 minutes before your flight, even with your husband's metal leg, he will make it through IF he chooses to go through a body scanner.

I'd like to alleviate any of your fears of going through a body scanner, but as I understand how you feel (I've been through similar conditions), try this:

I do NOT recommend overtly "opting out" of the body scanner at the security checkpoint- this will only serve to anger both security (who, quite honestly, are not expecting opt-outs) and the people behind you. What I recommend you do is talk to the agent at the Singapore Airlines desk WELL before your flight (give it 3.30 hours) and explain to her the situation regarding your husband. He/she can give you a pass that will entitle you to go through the first class line, thus makin your security screening quicker. In addition, Singapore Airlines can make a note to security telling them to prepare to have you and your husband undergo pat downs. Usually, this makes the pat down less invasive as well, as security understands that the airline, a trusted third party, has consented to a pat-down search as well.
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Jul 2nd, 2012, 10:20 AM
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Thank you so much for your reply jgman182 and suggestions, but one question: Hubby cannot even have an MRI so how is the body scanners any different, its still imaging. When Metal detectors were used, remember those, like walking thru a door frame - alarm would sound and he would get frisked. I will certainly call Singapore Air and talk to Airlines desk as will. Will be flying first time new Airbus A380-800, upper deck economy.
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Jul 2nd, 2012, 06:46 PM
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jgman182 didn't tell your husband to go through the scanner. He told you to GO get Singapore Airlines agents EARLY to give you passes/accesses to go through security differently. DON'T just go straight through the regular security counter and TRY to explain his situation to those TSA agents right there.
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Jul 4th, 2012, 06:05 PM
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I opt out of the scan every time and usually have to wait for a patdown
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Jul 6th, 2012, 02:18 PM
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Sandy~ the retained metal in your husband's leg prevents him from having an MRI because of the magnetic field used......the airport scanners use radiation.
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Jul 9th, 2012, 10:23 AM
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Thanks for your reply tenthumbs, I did not know that!!
Thanks, Sandy
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Jul 9th, 2012, 04:24 PM
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You are very welcome!
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Jul 11th, 2012, 06:25 PM
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But he still should not have a scan. Get a note from his doctor if you want to be sure.
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Jul 12th, 2012, 08:15 AM
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Doug, I'm curious~why are you recommending he not be scanned?
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Jul 12th, 2012, 09:39 AM
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He has just been treated for cancer, which presumably has weakened his immune system due to chemotherapy or radiation treatments (or both). No one who has undergone significant medical procedures including multiple xrays and cat scans should get more unnecessary radiation. Thus, my suggestion.
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Jul 12th, 2012, 09:56 AM
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He'll get more radiation from the flight than he will from the scanner.
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Jul 17th, 2012, 12:00 PM
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I want to thank all for your replies and where else could one go for such valuable information.
Thanks, Sandy
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Jul 17th, 2012, 12:14 PM
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Amazing what information can be gleaned from Fodor's, isn't it??

Have a great time on your trip!
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