08/24/2012 11:08 am ET

TSA Rejects Proposed Shoe Scanners At U.S. Airports

WASHINGTON — After spending millions of dollars testing four different scanning devices that would allow airline passengers to keep their shoes on at security checkpoints, the United States government has decided for now that travelers must continue to remove their footwear, by far the leading source of frustration and delays at the airport.

Shoe scans at airport security checkpoints are the leading cause of passenger frustration and delays.

The Transportation Security Administration said it had rejected all four devices because they failed to adequately detect explosives and metal weapons during tests at various airports. One of the scanners is now used in airports in 18 countries.

Last September, Secretary Janet Napolitano of the Homeland Security Department raised hopes when she said that research and development on scanning machines was progressing and that air travelers would eventually be able to keep their shoes on.