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[IP] RE:arrest, traveling in & out of US with pump

When I first got the pump I already had a trip planned to visit some family
in Cuba. With my vivid imagination I could easily picture some very horrible
situations going there with a device that isn't known there. I called
MiniMed (I have a blue 508) at their help number and asked them if there was
anything special I needed to do to go through airport security and what
precaution I could take. The told me the pump would be fine and that I
should carry with me a letter from the doctor explaining what the pump is
and that it is medically necessary to keep it attached to me at all times.
His office number and address was already included in the letterhead of the
note. Also I took a copy of prescriptions with me for insulin just to have
further proof.
I wore the pump on my waistband and didn't disconnect to go through the
security thing, the personnel asked what it was and to press a button on it
(somehow this proved to them it wasn't a bomb). My trip turned out fine and
I didn't have any issues with any security and even got to educate a couple
of doctors about the pump.
A few months later I traveled to Colombia (another one of those countries
with extreme security) to visit more family. I went through the same
procedure and  called MiniMed, they gave me a toll free number to call in
case I had any problems. At the time I didn't know that pump companies
loaned pumps to customers who were traveling out of the country, but since I
took syringes and NPH I figured I could use that till I got back to the
On both trips I took 2.5 times more supplies than what I'll actually need.
and I take this with me on the plane, not in my suitcase.
Thankfully I didn't experience any horror story like what Ed Girou went
through, but I could imagine the possibility if I didn't have all the
information about the pump.


----------Original Message---------------

Date: Mon, 11 Jun 2001 22:41:42 -0500
From: Ed Girou <email @ redacted>
Subject: [IP] Arrest

Okay, here's my horror story.

The pump sounded an alarm which
brought attention from the security idiots.  They looked at the pump
with the 42" of tubing and became immediately suspicious.
Security supervisor was very suspicious, but somewhat understanding.
So I started to put back the batteries and when inserting the second battery
the pump started a different alarm tone which caused the security folks to
scream at me,spread eagle, searched, handcuffed and routed to an interview

Question #1 for the list:  What do you do at airports?  I travel
extensively (domestic and international).
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