A few days after last September 11 it became apparent that the FAA and even the Department of Transportation did not have much say in aviation security matters. Both FAA Administrator Jane Garvey and Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta admitted as much in congressional hearings one week later.
Transportation in the United States
With the addition of one new face and the reconfirmation of another, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) now has its full complement of five members.
In late September Marion Blakey was sworn in as the ninth chairman of the NTSB after being confirmed by the Senate. That same month the Senate reconfirmed John Hammerschmidt as an NTSB member.
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is in the process of contacting air taxi operators regulated by the Twelve-Five Standard Security Program (TFSSP) to conduct security inspections. TSA principal security inspectors (PSIs) will hold interviews with aircraft operator security coordinators and review the procedures employed to check passengers.
It started several years ago when Boeing began selling its BBJ in numbers that the airline manufacturer never expected (25 in the first year, 82 overall since its inception in 1996). Though bizliners are not a new concept, the BBJ stirred some issues that were mostly dormant at North American airports.
By any measure of market share and financial performance, the convalescence of the U.S. regional airline industry looks nearly complete. Since last year’s RAA convention in Phoenix, the nation’s regionals have posted double-digit traffic gains while margins marched toward pre-9/11 levels and RJ fleets grabbed another 5 percent of the air transport network’s market share. Far from issuing a clean bill
NBAA and the National Air Transportation Association (NATA) have submitted comments on the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) “twelve-five” program, requesting a delay in the June 24 implementation date. The new rule applies to transport-category (12,500-lb mtow and above) air-taxi operators when passengers or crew are enplaning or deplaning in an airport’s “sterile” area (generally the airline ramp or terminal and its gates).
Business aviation may win a few more converts as a result of the most recent Transportation Security Administration (TSA) edict expanding the use of manual pat-down searches during “secondary” screening.
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) expected to have rules drafted by the end of last month that would allow “qualified” GA operations back into Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA).
Pilots and mechanics have been waiting since December for the Transportation Security Administration to act on Congress’ directive to incorporate a plan for giving airmen and mechanics a third-party review option if they lose their license for alleged security reasons. Although there have been no reports of FAA certificates being pulled due to regulations adopted in January 2003, the TSA has decided to suspend enforcing the rule.
General aviation received some good news and some not-so-good news last month with regard to airport security.