By Joe Johns
CNN - As of Sept. 11, 2001, knives have been banned from passing airport security; that law will soon change.
Head of the Transportation Security Administration John Pistole decided to allow small knives on planes, as of March 5, and is hearing harsh criticism.
The limit on liquids remains in effect for all airlines.
"A small pocketknife is simply not going to result in the catastrophic failure of an aircraft, an improvised explosive device will," Pistole said. "And we know from internal covert testing searching for these items which will not blow up an aircraft can distract our security officers from focusing on the components of an IED."
But many want TSA to rethink this decision.
"You need to stop this now! These cause bleeding. These cause injury," Democratic Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee said. "These could cause a terrible tragedy and I don't want to take it to the next length, it can possibly cause someone to lose their life."
Three airlines and the Flight Attendants Association do not support the change.
"We have to help de-escalate conflicts on board and sometimes we even have to
ask passengers to help us contain those conflicts. If you introduce a weapon
into that scenario it is not helpful at all," Lee said.
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