PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Airport officials gave a rare look at what exactly happens to your checked luggage when flying. The TSA showed off its new baggage screening equipment at the Philadelphia International Airport on Thursday.
It’s part of a system of large conveyor belts and high-tech scanners to keep you safe.
Those scanners take a 3D cat scan image of each of the 15,000 bags that move through the system every day.
“What happens is, the 3D image triggers the alarm — these are called EDS, explosive detective systems machines — if it triggers an alarm, someone in another building remotely can see that 3D image on a screen, they can manipulate that image to see, oh it’s just dishes,” TSA spokesperson Lisa Farbstein said. “You’d be surprised how many people travel with dishes. Or maybe it is something that is explosive and triggers an alarm and then the baggage, as it’s on the conveyor belt, will get diverted to a room where TSA officers will open it to make a determination whether it’s safe for that item in the checked baggage to fly.”
Once the bagger clears the system, it heads onto the plane.