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Airport Security Design Essay

1975 words - 8 pages

Prior to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks (9/11), the Aviation Security Improvement Act of 1990 directed the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to work with the aviation industry to develop guidelines and procedures to maximize security within the airport planning, design, and construction phases. Two months after 9/11, the Aviation and Transportation Security Act of 2001 (ATSA) was enacted and thus the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) was established. In 2002, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was established with the passing of the Homeland Security Act. DHS was created, in part, to prevent terrorist attacks within the United States, reduce vulnerability ...view middle of the document...

During all phases of an airport’s design process, the FSD and local FAA officials maintain contact and consult with airport operators to ensure the security requirements within 49 CFR 1542 are being met (U.S Government Printing Office, 2010). During an airport’s design and construction phases, airport operators, FSDs, and FAA officials should be informed of any construction changes or modifications in order to lessen future security implications within the airport’s facilities, to airport assets, to the general public, to airline passengers, and airport and airline employees. As well, local law enforcement, security, and safety personnel should be closely included in the planning and design of an ASP. All parties should be informed of any security concerns and changes in security measures or posture. Overall, when planning and designing an ASP and system, the FSD and the airport operator, should ensure all security measures meet the intent of 49 CFR 1542 and are compliant with Federal, State, and local laws, regulations, and policies.
Vulnerability Assessment. According to the TSA’s 2011 Recommended Security Guidelines for Airport Planning, Design and Construction, an airport operator has the responsibility to provide a secure and safe operating environment and infrastructure and high priority should be placed on protecting aircraft from weapons, explosives, and substances considered dangerous. Fulfilling these responsibilities begins in an airport’s initial planning and design phases. In the infancy of a design project, facility security is often one of the first priorities and an airport vulnerability assessment helps to establish the level of security an airport may require. A vulnerability assessment helps to identify potentially damaging threats to an airport’s facilities, personnel, and assets. The results of an airport vulnerability assessment provides airport operators, FSPs, FAA officials, and others involved in the security system design process with a better understanding of not only threats to the facility, personnel, and assets, but more specific information regarding target identification, the enemy, concerning behaviors and activities, and the likely consequences should an attack occur (Transportation Security Administration, 2011). An airport vulnerability assessment also helps identify different security risk levels, and counter measures and risk reduction techniques that should be incorporated into the security system design. An airport vulnerability assessment is the best tool to advise airport operators and security personnel as to the current vulnerabilities, the threat picture, and the potential for threat related activities in the future. An airport vulnerability assessment is also an important tool that allows all those involved in the security design process to evaluate, analyze, and improve security. Conducting the vulnerability assessment early in the planning and design process ultimately saves time,...

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