UPDATE: 6/5 at 2:10 p.m.
WASHINGTON- The head of the Transportation Security Administration says he's dropping a proposal that would have let airline passengers carry small knives, souvenir bats, golf clubs and other sports equipment onto planes.
After an outcry from several groups, most notably flight attendants unions, as well as a number of members of Congress, the agency announced in March that it was temporarily delaying implementation of the changes and would study the issue more.
John Pistole tells The Associated Press that dropping the proposal allows his agency to focus on other programs.
Last month 145 House members signed a letter asking Pistole to keep the current policy that bars passengers from carrying aboard knives and other items.
When Pistole released the proposal in March, he said the knives couldn't enable terrorists to cause a plane to crash.
TSA screeners confiscate over 2,000 of the small folding knives a day from passengers.
In a statement, the TSA said it "will continue to enforce the current prohibited items list. TSA's top priority continues to be expansion of efforts to implement a layered, Risk-Based Security approach to passenger screening while maximizing resources. Risk-Based Security enhances the travel experience while allowing TSA to continue to keep passengers safe by focusing on those we know less about, and we will continue to take steps to improve our ever evolving security posture while also improving the experience of the traveling public."
ORIGINAL STORY: 4/22 at 8:29 p.m.
Federal officials say they're delaying a policy that would allow passengers to carry small knives, bats and other sports equipment onto airliners.
The Transportation Security Administration said Monday that the policy change has been delayed to accommodate feedback from an advisory committee made up of aviation industry, consumer and law enforcement officials.
John Pistole, head of the Transportation Security Administration, proposed the policy change last month, saying it would free up the agency to concentrate on protecting against greater threats. TSA screeners confiscate about 2,000 small folding knives from passengers every day.
The policy was to go into effect Thursday. The TSA's statement said the delay was temporary, but no new date for implementation was provided.
The policy has been fiercely opposed by flight attendants' unions.
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