Page images

providing to the airlines for use by their passenger screening people some updated and hopefully helpful training materials to make them better able to detect these types of very sophisticated devices that we are concerned about today. We cannot ignore the human factor implications of the people who do this kind of work. I am aware that the airlines have an initiative to look at the human element in this system, and that might be something you would want to ask of them later. They are clearly an integral part of the system. Mr. OBERSTAR. There's no question about it. We certainly appreciate that. The gentleman from California, Mr. Packard? Mr. PACKARD. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. We prevent the distribution, production, and manufacture of certain drugs until they have been adequately tested. We pass rules and regulations that prevent plastic guns from being produced without certain detectable parts to them for surveillance. Is it possible for us to prevent or to ban the manufacture and production and distribution of explosives until there are detection devices that would allow them to be detectable? Mr. SALAZAR. If I may, sir, I believe that there are always legislative remedies to these kinds of things, but I think certainly that the FAA in particular would still have to be on guard and still advance this technology and still look for the best methods of finding these kinds of explosives or articles even though they are banned, because there will always be other countries that may not abide, and there may be unscrupulous manufacturers, as well. Mr. PACKARD. Thank you. [The prepared statements of Mr. Belger and Ambassador McManaway follow:]


Mr. Chairman and Members of the Subcommittee:

I am pleased to appear before the Subcommittee today to describe briefly for you the FAA’s efforts to combat the threat of terrorist activity against civil aviation, and to highlight some of our activities under the International Security and Development Cooperation Act of 1985. With me today is Mr. Raymond Salazar,

FAA’s Director of Civil Aviation Security.

I am attaching to my prepared statement information that the Subcommittee has requested concerning a variety of areas associated with the FAA’s aviation security programs. We would,

of course, be pleased to discuss those issues further with you.

I welcome the Subcommittee’s hearing today as an example of the commitment of all segments of government to come to grips with the threat of terrorism. The recent tragedy of Pan Am Flight los highlights the seriousness of that threat, and reinforces that we must do all that is technologically and humanly possible to reduce that threat to the traveling public. We must demonstrate a firm and unwavering resolve to counter whatever new measures might be

instituted by the criminals who would hold our air


-2'transportation system hostage and threaten the lives of our


To respond to the threat of terrorism, it is the FAA’s job to work closely with intelligence agencies to seek to identify what the potential threats against civil aviation are, and then to apply the appropriate tools and techniques necessary to offset the tools and techniques used by those who would thwart the system. It is an ever changing process because, as technology and political

objectives change, so does the threat.

In the early 1970’s, for example, we revolutionized the civil aviation security system by instituting a sky marshal program and by implementing a highly effective passenger screening system designed to stem the wave of hijackings being experienced at that time. But as the level and nature of the threat to the traveling public has varied, so has our response. We have continued to make changes to that system, through heightened expectations of what the system must be able to detect and through improvements to equipment, techniques, and personnel; our recent requirement calling for improved systems for restricting and monitoring access to secured areas on airports is one example of such a change. And

the system has worked remarkably well for over a decade and a half.

In 1985, following the TWA hijacking, Congress, with the strong

leadership of this Subcommittee, called on the FAA to initiate a

-3major program to make assessments of the security of foreign airports serving the United States. This new legislative thrust, contained in the International Security and Development Cooperation Act, significantly expanded the FAA's "global" presence in security matters and represented a measured response to a growing international threat against American aviation interests. Additional steps were taken as well at that time to increase funding for FAA security research and development work and to bolster security inspector and Federal Air Marshal staffing within the FAA. Further, the United States worked within the International Civil Aviation Organization to strengthen international security requirements, and the FAA took actions to

enhance security requirements for U.S. carriers operating abroad.

More recently, following the Pan Am tragedy over Scotland, FAA instituted a series of new security measures to tighten U.S. air carrier security requirements at airports in Western Europe and

the Middle East:

o Airlines must now complete look x-ray or physical inspection

of all checked baggage.

o Passengers may not have access to the contents of checked

baggage following the security inspection.


-4o Airlines must perform a positive match of passenger and baggage to ensure that unaccompanied bags are not loaded onto

the aircraft.

o Airlines must take additional measures to preclude unauthorized access to baggage from check-in to loading on

board the aircraft.

o An increased number of passengers is to be randomly selected for enhanced screening. Checked baggage of the persons identified for enhanced screening must be physically


o Small packages and parcels that are shipped through passenger ticket counters must be x-rayed or physically

examined prior to shipment.

These measures exact a cost on our air transportation system and are not lightly taken by the FAA. But we will not hesitate to tilt the balance toward improved security and away from convenience when that is necessary to protect our citizens. Thus far, these measures appear to be working without undue hardship or

inconvenience to air travelers.

We are also continuing our aggressive program of foreign airport

assessments called for in the International Security and

« PreviousContinue »