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TSA to offer pre-flight screening

  |   July 22, 2013 at 6:09 PM
WASHINGTON, July 22 (UPI) -- The U.S. Transportation Security Administration will expand pre-airport screening to the general public, a perk presently only afforded to some frequent fliers.

Travelers will be allowed to apply in person at airports across the country and provide necessary information that will allow them to skip the cumbersome -- some say intrusive -- screenings that most fliers undergo presently.

Travelers wishing to enroll will have to submit fingerprint samples and some personal information including name, birthday and possibly their Social Security number to TSA agents and pay an undetermined fee. In exchange, they won't have to perform the airport security ritual of taking off shoes and belts, removing laptop computers from briefcases and other common security protocols.

Instead, they would proceed to a separate security line that would only include body scans and an X-ray check of carry-on luggage, The Washington Post said.

The TSA has not said when it plans to expand the Pre-Check program to the public at large. At present, members can only apply at two airports -- Dulles International Airport outside Washington, D.C., and Indianapolis International Airport -- but once enrolled, Pre-Check members can use the shorter lines at more than 40 airports nationwide, officials said.

"TSA Pre-Check enables us to focus on the travelers we know the least about, adding efficiency and effectiveness to the screening process," TSA Administrator John S. Pistole said in a statement Friday.

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