Keep Your Radiation, TSA, I'm Done Flying

Sahar Aker
9

After a couple of recent flights, I've decided traveling by air just isn't worth the hassle ... or health risks. It was bad enough I had to shell out extra cash to pay for checked luggage. Now, I have to worry about possibly getting cancer from those freaky new airport body scanners.

A lot of people have been complaining about how the TSA's body scanning machines can see us naked and how it's an invasion of privacy. Agreed. But top the nudity issue with radiation and the whole experience of trying to fly the friendly skies turns into an uncomfortable dance with danger.  

Right now, there are nearly 400 of these things at airports across the country. And by the end of the year, there will be about 500 of them, increasing our exposure to radiation even more.

I know, I know -- the TSA says the dose of radiation you get is low and the machines are safe. But I'm not sure I buy it. I mean, if these scanners are powerful enough to show your private parts and find out if you're packing explosives or weapons, can they really be benign?

Of course, it doesn't help that some scientists are speaking out against the scanners, saying the radiation levels have been underestimated and that the dose may really be up to 20 times higher than first thought! And it's early yet. In five years, how high will we find out it really is?

It's not like it would be the first time something that was thought to be safe turned out not to be. Remember asbestos, pesticides, and BPA? Those were once deemed "safe" as well! Will airport body scanners, one day, join their ranks?

I'd rather drive to my next destination than find out.

 

Image via rupix/Flickr

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