Advanced Face Recognition Ups Airport Security

The ever-tightening search for and exposure of potential terrorists attempting to board commercial flights continues. Now being tested in several major U.S. airports, Biometric Exit is one way to automatically photo and store faces and personal info in instant-access electronic files.

The system will scan faces of all passengers who go through check-in lines. It will quickly ID those who require further scrutiny. Immediate action by security guards will be able to prevent sabotage or other danger to departing aircraft.

Airport tips: Watch valuables when going thru security PDF Print E-mail

airport sign

We’re sure 99.99% of airport security people are totally honest. Wish we could say the same about politicians. However, airport thefts do happen. A recent news item told of an arrest at Newark Airport of a security guy who’s suspected of regularly swiping valuables from bags going through the x-ray, moving belt and bag search areas.

To totally avoid such a theft ever happening when you fly, just follow some simple rules:

Americans abroad: Crossing streets #1 hazard PDF Print E-mail

Night traffic

Do I look to the right, or do I look left before crossing the street in this country?

According to the State Department, a thousand American tourists have been killed in traffic accidents in each of the past seven years while traveling in foreign countries. This is far more than those killed by street crimes and terrorist acts.

One of the main causes is unfamiliarity with traffic patterns, especially in Great Britain, where the lanes are the opposite of those in the U.S. The accidents, usually at night, happen to pedestrians who look the wrong way before stepping into the street.

One such accident almost changed history, and it happened to a British visitor who made that same type of mistake when he looked the wrong way before stepping into a New York City street in the 1920s. Young Winston Churchill was hit by a taxicab, nearly killed and spent months in the hospital. 

The same danger faces American tourists who rent cars in England and other countries where traffic rules are different. Other accidents that injure and kill American tourists involve hiring or riding in unsafe cars, taxis and buses.

When traveling on unfamiliar streets, know the rules and be extra careful when you venture out on them.

Q&A: Should the wheelchair-bound fly alone? PDF Print E-mail


Q: Now in my mid-80s, I can no longer do the long walks necessary in airports. I need to use a wheelchair. I read recently about a disabled man in a wheelchair was kicked off a flight because he didn’t have a companion with him. The airline said he couldn’t help himself if there would be an emergency. For my future flights, should I always travel with another person?

Travel Q&A: Don't book with online crook! PDF Print E-mail

Cartoon of thief

Q: I booked online and paid cash for a month’s rent at a “charming 18th Century petite maison” in the Sorbonne area of Paris. When the taxi dropped me off and I rang the bell, the home owner told me angrily that some internet rip-off guys in Morocco were doing this to British tourists all the time. What can I do about it?  Marianne K., London SW GB

Warsaw, Poland: Never too old for polka PDF Print E-mail

Polish senior dancers


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