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FAA chief: Top agency challenges include security, management

February 11, 2003 Last September, Marion Blakey became the new administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration after having served as chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board. Since September 11, most of the attention on aviation matters has focused on security, especially on the Transportation Security Administration, but the FAA still has to...

Transportation security agency's progress uneven

August 12, 2002 Most aviation experts agree that the nation's airport security is much better than it was before September 11. And a year from now, they say, it will be much better than it is today. But the system is certainly not perfect today-and unfortunately, it never will be. One of the...

In transportation security, blame game is in full swing

August 2, 2002 When Congress passed monumental legislation last fall overhauling the nation's airport security, Washington seemed guided by a sense of unity, purpose, and determination to get the job done. "The broad support for this bill shows that our country is united in this crisis," President Bush said when he signed the...

Air marshals train to tackle terrorism

June 4, 2002 ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. -- Thirty minutes into a Delta Air Lines flight, an unassuming man got up from his seat and walked into the first-class lavatory. When he reappeared moments later, he had transformed himself into one of America's worst nightmares: a knife-wielding terrorist who wanted to bring down the...

Airport security has nowhere to go but up, experts say

April 15, 2002 The news was surprising and not very reassuring: In 70 percent of all tests, undercover government agents were able to sneak knives past airport screeners; in 60 percent of their attempts, they succeeded in slipping simulated explosive devices past the screening system; and 30 percent of the time, they were...

Baggage screener unionization issue still up in the air

March 22, 2002 During last year's debate in Congress over airport security, most observers seemed to assume one thing: Federalized airport screeners would be card-carrying union members. That was certainly what the opponents of federalization were saying at the time: "What the Democrats are pushing for here is that ... everybody that is...

Transportation Secretary occupies an unlikely space: center stage

January 14, 2002 On the morning of September 11, Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta had just one thing on his mind: noise. He was in his conference room at a breakfast meeting with Isabelle Durant, Belgium's transportation minister, discussing the European Union's plan to restrict aircraft noise at its member nations' airports. With them...

Transportation Secretary cracks down on airport security violations

November 9, 2001 Since the September 11 terrorist attacks, Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta has probably dreaded thumbing through his press clippings. Day after day, it seems, journalists highlight every hole in the country's airport security system and each lapse by airport screeners. Last month, the media had a field day reporting that Argenbright...

Airport security initiatives raise more questions than answers

October 12, 2001 Air marshals. Fortified cockpit doors. Federalized airport screeners. Before September 11, few had paid much attention to these terms or to their policy implications. But after terrorists--armed only with small box-cutter knives--hijacked U.S. jetliners and slammed them into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, the words have become part...

Labor Secretary takes ergonomics show on the road

July 17, 2001 As Labor Secretary Labor Elaine Chao kicked off the first of three public forums addressing the controversial issue of ergonomics Monday, her approach was already drawing criticism from labor groups and other observers. "This is a 100 percent eyewash," said one observer of labor and safety matters. "How much substance...

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