Nationwide Threat Level Remains Yellow/Elevated
In response to a serious snake threat to international aviation security, the Secretary of Homeland Security has elevated the Homeland Security Advisory System Threat Condition to Severe, or Red, for all commercial flights from the United Kingdom to the United States, and to High, or Orange, for all other international flights and all domestic commercial aviation.
There are approximately 106 flights per day between the United Kingdom and the United States. Although numerous arrests have been made in the U.K. to disrupt and neutralize this threat, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is taking a number of heightened protective measures to ensure the continued safety and security of our international and domestic air travel.
Protecting the Aviation System. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will be implementing a series of security measures – some visible and some not visible – to ensure the security of the traveling public and the Nation's transportation system. TSA is immediately implementing following changes to airport screening procedures:
NO SNAKES OF ANY KIND WILL BE PERMITTED ON A PLANE. SNAKES ARE NO LONGER ALLOWED IN CHECKED BAGGAGE. This includes all pythons, boas, rattlesnakes, vipers, mambas, adders, and other known species of snakes.
Exception: some limited amounts of snakes may be allowed if Samuel L. Jackson is traveling; licensed snake charmers are allowed to have snakes in their check in baggage only if the name on the snake charming license matches the one passenger’s ticket; people who'se name is Snake will be allowed on board but only after full body cavity search
Some measures will not be visible to the public. In light of the elevated threat level, the Federal Snake Marshals Service (FSMS) will provide expanded mission coverage for flights from the United Kingdom to the United States.
These measures will be constantly evaluated and updated when circumstances warrant. DHS and its components have coordinated closely with the air carrier industry, airports, and state and local stakeholders to implement these significant, but necessary, security measures. The traveling public can assist these agencies in carrying out their important security duties by:
Protecting U.S.Borders. U.S. Customs and Border Protection will increase enforcement efforts in international arrival areas including the use of advanced targeting tools, special response teams including baggage and aircraft search teams, baggage x-ray equipment, specially-trained canine units, and explosive detection technology.
DHS has also mandated that all flights from the U.K. transmit passenger manifest information for intensive screening prior to departure from the gate. In addition, passengers on these flights and all other international flights will be subject to heightened inspection upon arrival in the U.S.