Full-Body Scanners at DFW and Love Field Are Safe: Homeland Security

New report says scanners that use X-rays use "an extremely low dose" of radiation

Tuesday, Feb 28, 2012  |  Updated 4:32 PM CDT
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Radiation Concerns in Body Scanners

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A Transportation Security Administration security officer looks at images created by a "backscatter" scanner during a demonstration at the TSA's Systems Integration Facility at Ronald Reagan National Airport December 30, 2009.

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The older generation full-body scanners, like those at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport and Dallas Love Field, are safe even for the most frequent flyers according to the Department of Homeland Security.

A new 32-page report released by the department's inspector general shows someone would have to go through the full-body scanner 17,000 times a year to surpass the accepted limit of radiation. That would be like being screened 47 times a day, every day of the year.

The inspector general said the Transportation Safety Administration checks the backscatter X-ray machines regularly to make sure they're not emitting more radiation than is necessary, but the report recommends, and the TSA agrees, machine operators need more training.

247 backscatter scanners have been installed at 39 airports, including DFW Airport and Love Field, since March 2010.

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