The U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) recently announced that traveler complaints against it were near an all-time low. A recent report indicated that complaints about the TSA dropped in September to 1,418, the lowest since record-keeping began seven years ago.
So, if complaints are down, passenger satisfaction must be up? WOW! The TSA strategy must be paying off. Yet, anyone who has taken a basic course in statistics recognizes that this is an unpardonable and misplaced interpretation of the recent decline in complaints from passengers.
|Source: TSA site|
Not complaining for the official record does not mean that all is well! But it is a start!
With the realization that airports are a “customer-service business,” a major hurdle in the security “mind-set” of policy makers is taking place. It is probably for this reason that “out of the blue” customer complaints are making headlines. This is a good sign, but it is important to recognize that misusing statistics does not bode well in efforts to revamp prior notions of airport security. It will only increase distrust of authorities and lead to utilizing other forms of mass transportation when it is available. Both are death knells for the aviation industry.
*The writer is the initiator and coordinator of BEMOSA (Behavioral Modeling of Security in Airports).