Emergency Management

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Air Travelers

Security awareness is everyone’s responsibility. Take time to make it an integral part of your travel experience.

  • Be aware of suspicious activity in and around your immediate surroundings. Inform the proper authorities if you are concerned about an unattended item or suspicious activity in and around any facility. Be extra careful if you work on your laptop. Working takes your attention away from your surroundings.
  • Remember to control all carry-on bags and keep your items and tickets with you at all times. Medicines, cash, jewelry, business papers and valuables should be packed in carry-on bags.
  • Never leave anything unattended as it could be subjected to tampering and/or theft
  • Never carry anything from another person, especially for someone you do not know
  • If you notice a suspicious item, do NOT touch it. Contact the authorities and provide a description of the item and its location. DO NOT use your cell phone within 50 feet of a suspicious item
  • If you notice a suspicious individual, contact authorities and provide a complete description, including race, sex, height, weight, clothing, objects the subject may be carrying, location of the individual and direction of travel and what aroused your suspicion

Many of these activities, in and of themselves, may not indicate criminal activity. Taken together, however, they may be a cause for concern. If you observe people acting suspiciously, don’t hesitate to contact local law enforcement.

Before the Airport

  • If you are planning to travel overseas, check the U.S. Department of State website www.state.gov for current travel warnings.
  • Do not pack or bring prohibited items to the airport. Read the Transportation Security Administration’s “Permitted and Prohibited Items” list at www.tsa.gov for the current list of prohibited items
  • Place valuables such as jewelry, cash, and laptop computers in carry-on baggage only. Tape your business card to the bottom of your laptop
  • Avoid wearing clothing, jewelry and accessories that contain metal. Metal items may set off the alarm on the metal detector
  • Avoid wearing shoes that contain metal or have thick soles or heels. Many types of footwear will require additional screening
  • Put all undeveloped film and cameras with film in your carry-on baggage. Checked baggage screening equipment will damage undeveloped film
  • Declare firearms and ammunition to the airline and place them in your checked baggage
  • If you wish to lock your baggage, use a TSA-recognized lock
  • Do not bring lighters or prohibited matches to the airport
  • Do not pack wrapped gifts and do not bring wrapped gifts to the checkpoint. Wrap on arrival or ship your gifts prior to your departure. TSA may have to unwrap packages for security reasons

At the Airport

  • Keep the boarding pass and government-issued photo ID readily available. You may be required to display them more than once
  • Place the following items IN your carry-on baggage or in a plastic bag prior to entering the screening checkpoint: mobile phones, keys, loose change, money clips, PDAs (personal data assistants), large amounts of jewelry, metal hair decorations and large belt buckles
  • Take laptops and video camera with cassettes OUT of their cases
  • Take OFF all outer coats, suit coats, jackets and blazers

Contact Us

Polk County Emergency Management
1907 Carpenter Avenue
Des Moines, IA 50314
(515) 286-2107

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