U.S. air cargo still unsecured

Published 30 November 2005

More than twenty-three billion pounds of goods are transported within the United States on passenger and cargo planes every year, but the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has only 900 workers who oversee private industry security workers who screen this cargo. This “is a disaster waiting to happen,” says Representative Christopher Shays (R-Conn.). “`We’re checking luggage but not cargo? It only takes a pound or two of explosives” to blow up a plane. Security experts and industry groups say that mismanagement, a multibillion-dollar price tag, and pressure by airlines and shippers have so far prevented the U.S. government from adopting stricter air-cargo inspection rules. Not that the administration showed great interest in the topic. A 16 November report by the Government Accounting Office (GAO) criticized TSA for not developing a plan and timetable for putting in place comprehensive security measures.

-read more in Jeff Bliss’s Bloomberg report