GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A Lowell mother wants answers after she says the Transportation Security Administration in Florida made her family miss their flight back to Grand Rapids because of her breast milk.
The Vromans were wrapping up their spring break vacation when it happened.
Stacie Vroman said she prepared for the trip with two bottles of breast milk that met TSA regulations, but she never expected the impending nightmare when she reached the security checkpoint.
The line was long in St. Petersburg, Florida, but the Vroman family was assured they’d make their flight back to Grand Rapids.
“I was starting to get concerned and I had taken out just two small bottles of breast milk because I wanted to let them know, you know, ahead of time, hey I have breast milk with me,” Vroman said.
But her family’s screening process did not go smoothly.
“They would not let me through. They said, ‘We have to check it’ and I said ‘Sure, great. Go ahead and check it,” Vroman said.
But she says that didn’t happen. Vroman said the two three-ounce bottles just sat there in security.
She waited and asked when they’d inspect it as her husband, baby and toddler all waited at the gate, trying to hold the flight for her.
“And I had asked TSA, I said, ‘Can you guys just check it because I have to get on the flight.’ Like I’m my child’s source of food… so I have to be on the same flight, otherwise we don’t have a way to feed him,” Vroman said, fighting back emotion.
After no movement, her questions turned to desperation. Vroman said she offered to dump the milk so she could make her flight.
“I have to go because I have to be able to feed him. And they said, ‘No, you can’t leave,” Vroman recounted.
She and her family not only missed their flight, they had to wait for a much later flight to Indianapolis. They then had to rent a car to drive four hours back to Grand Rapids with a baby and toddler.
She said she just doesn’t understand what happened.
“As a mom, to be able to feed your kid and feel like you’re not going to be able to, it was extremely frustrating,” Vroman said.
24 Hour News 8 reached out to the TSA office in Florida, but our messages had not been returned as of Thursday afternoon.
The TSA website states passengers must inform a TSA agent they’re traveling with breast milk, which is what Vroman did. It also says TSA officers may need to test the liquid by pouring some of it out.