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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted at 1:01 p.m., Thursday, August 10, 2006

Expect additional security screenings at Hilo airport

By Kevin Dayton
Advertiser Staff Writer

At the Hilo airport, the security staff is using the public address system to regularly advise passengers of the heightened security, warning they would be subject to additional "screening" at the gates. The announcements also remind passengers that no liquids will be allowed in carry-on luggage.

The extra precautions were of no particular concern to Betty and Howard Davis of Wellston, Ohio, who were headed from the Big Island to Maui as part of a vacation with their granddaughter, Tamar Kisor, 18. There were no lines at the Hilo security checkpoint and no sign that the extra security precautions would cause them any delay.

The family watched the news last night and they were ready this morning: They were checking in for their flight with little more than a camera, Betty Davis's purse and a cell phone. Betty Davis said the threat did not cause any change in the family's travel plans.

"I guess it's always in your mind, you think about it, but I guess with the security measure in place now, you feel a little safer," said Betty Davis, 55.

Alvin Trapp, of Kihei, worried about how he would repack his belongings to stow his shaving cream and saline solution for his contact lenses — items he had planned to bring with him as carry-on luggage. Airport security advised him those items would not be permitted as carry-on for his trip from Hilo back to Maui.

Trapp said a friend called him last night to warn him about the London arrests.

"It's fear, they're instilling fear in people, is what they're doing," he said. "They take care of it over there (in London), and now I come here today and I find out on the radio, no liquids at all. That's overboard."

Nathan Tyau, 33, called the extra security "necessary." Tyau, of Oahu, was vacationing with his wife, Sommer, and dog, Kekoa. Tyau is a captain in the Hawai'i Army National Guard who spent a year in Iraq, and heard news reports about the threat on the way to Hilo airport.