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Travelers arriving to Fort Lauderdale from Dubai respond to electronics ban in carry-on luggage

New directive affects travelers from 8 Middle Eastern countries

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The U.S. and U.K. on Tuesday barred people flying from much of the Middle East and North Africa from carrying large electronic devices, such as laptops and tablets, in the airplane cabin because of concerns about terrorism.

Passengers arriving to Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport on Tuesday from Dubai hadn't yet heard the news.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's new directive affects travelers from eight Middle Eastern countries, including U.S. allies Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states.

Passengers flying into the U.S. from 10 airports overseas will now be barred from bringing electronics bigger than cellphones in their carry-on luggage.

"What they are trying to do here is take an extra step, take anything that could be packed with explosives out of the cabin and prevent some sort of device from manually detonating in the cabin," homeland security expert Steve Ganyard said.

The ban prohibits laptops, tablets, cameras, DVD players and electronic games from entering the cabin, but does not include phones or medical devices.

All those items must be in passengers' checked-in luggage.

"This is a concern for me. I'm not aware of it," Wahaj Seraj, who flew Tuesday to South Florida from Dubai, said. "The gentleman asked me that question, which surprised me."

Local 10 News reporter Ian Margo spoke to passengers Tuesday after they arrived from Dubai. The security restrictions had yet to be implemented by the time they took off.

"If it's regarding security and safety, yeah, sure," a passenger said.

While some said they understood the electronics carry-on ban, others were not happy to hear about the ban.

"It will be very unfortunate not to have the laptop with you," a passenger said.


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