Local family calls for safety changes at TSA checkpoints

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - A San Diego woman say she got a traumatic brain injury trying to get through a TSA screening checkpoint at the airport.

Luann Rein is now suing the United States government and the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority claiming they need to take reasonable steps to avoid the existence of dangerous conditions in the security lanes of the airport. Metal Flower Stand Wedding Centrepiece

Local family calls for safety changes at TSA checkpoints

According to the lawsuit, Rein who was 68 at the time, fell after being told to remove her shoes and go through the X-ray machine.

The lawsuit says, “At the direction of TSA personnel, she put her cane on the conveyor belt to go through an X-ray machine. At the direction of TSA personnel, she walked through an adjacent X-ray body scanner, but set off the scanner. She was directed by TSA personnel to go back out of the X-ray machine and take off her shoes, then return through the machine to try again. Plaintiff looked for a place where she could take off her shoes. However, there was no chair to sit in for this purpose. As airport video of the incident shows, Plaintiff tried to balance herself with her left hand on a temporary stanchion that cordoned off the area she was in, and ultimately also put her right hand on her husband who was bending over to take off her shoes.”

The lawsuit says there was no warning sign on or near the stanchion to tell anyone that it’s unstable and dangerous to lean on.

According to the lawsuit, “After her husband took off one of Plaintiff’s shoes and started to take off the other, the video shows the unstable stanchion move/wobble, causing Plaintiff’s body weight to shift and Plaintiff to lose her balance. The momentum of the sudden weight shift due to the movement of the unstable stanchion, combined with her attempt to keep her herself from falling, caused Plaintiff to spin around as she lost her balance, fell, and hit the back of her head hard on the terrazzo floor, causing her to lose consciousness.”

“I didn’t know how bad it was, but kind of when you see blood from the back of the head you know something serious happened,” said Luann’s husband Don Rein.

Rein says his wife suffered a concussion and traumatic brain injury. He says she had a bloody head, back pain, and other injuries.

“You expect that certainly steps will be taken so that you won’t have a risk of injury,” said Rein’s attorney Lincoln Horton.

The lawsuit alleges negligence and premise liability. It asks for money for the incident.

In the lawsuit they argue, “Defendants’ employees created a dangerous condition in the security lane where Plaintiff attempted to go through by failing to have a chair for Plaintiff to sit in while she complied with Defendants’ employees’ order to remove her shoes.”

Horton says any member of the public should be entitled to have a chair to take off their shoes.

ABC 10News reached out to the officials for the airport and TSA. Both declined to comment because there’s an active lawsuit. ABC 10News asked specifically about seating and availably in screening lines but the TSA spokesperson did not respond to that email.

Local family calls for safety changes at TSA checkpoints

Folding Chair Camping “It doesn’t make any sense to me at all that they have chairs beyond the security line but not before the security line,” Horton said. “If a governmental agency is going to tell you to take off your shoes, they need to provide a chair for you to make sure you can do so safely and that didn’t happen in this case.”