Several best practices in the airport can be addressed. There are several myriads of regulatory and voluntary changes that have been implemented by aviation industries across the globe to harden and alleviate the chances of crime and terrorism at airports. Some programs have been put in place to report suspicious transactions during the selling or purchasing of aircrafts. There are also requirements to always screen citizens who are entering a country for possible criminal activities (Gillen, 2015). The essay will be discussing the airport watch program, which encourages pilots and other aviation staff to always report any suspicious activity to a toll-free number at any time of the day.
The airport watch program is a program that has been implemented in many airports across the world. No General Aviation staff across the globe has ever been found guilty of supporting any form of terrorism activities (AOPA.COM, 2019). Nonetheless, the program is still implemented to ensure that the security concerns are dealt with accordingly, and particularly on the cargo terminal. All airports, local municipalities, major cities, state and federal governments, airport operators, pilots, aircraft owners, and flight schools all work together in deploying a multi-layered system of accredited security procedures to identify any form of acts of terror and thwart it before it happens (AOPA.COM, 2019).
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AOPA has ensured that there are productive surveys across all airports across the country and ensures that appropriate maintenance is always conducted. These maintenances include improved fencing, implementation of modes of ID checks, and also the stationing of security and law enforcement workforces across the airports (Široký, 2018). The airports are points of entry of cargo to any state and country, and many cargoes, including terrorists’ can be shipped into the country;./bearing in mind that the USA has some of the busiest airports across the globe.
Advantages and Disadvantages of the Airport Watch Program
The airport watch program is paramount to any country as it ensures that any air which is a main point of entry is secured and does not present an opportunity for any form of attackers or their cargo to enter the country. The program is also important as it ensures the improvement of facilities at airports. The program is also essential in that it ensures that travelers have peace of mind while traveling to and from any airport that has implemented the program. Travelers are confident that they will be able to reach their destination as all travelers and cargo have been screened thoroughly through the security checks and deemed safe before traveling with nothing suspicious in the luggage (Poole, 2015). The security in aviation security is crucial in safeguarding civil aviation against security terror.
However, the program can be seen as a discriminatory tool against some travelers or their cargo, and more so those who come from a country that has been hit by terror attacks like Iran who have to be taken through a thorough check as compared to Americans and other Europeans. This program can also be expensive as it means governments have to invest more in security features in every airport (Široký, 2018). For effectiveness, every cargo has to take some time during screening. This means that every cargo will have to take more time during the checkup and can delay flights.
AOPA has implemented the program by requiring every airport to have a slot for TSA-approved Airport Security Program, which ensures that any airline that is carrying 61 or more passengers is scheduled to take off (Namowitz, 2018). The program also requires management to issue their employees with identification cards for easier identification and also conduct background issues to travelers and employees as well to ensure safety (Namowitz, 2018). As such, passengers are guaranteed that they are traveling with cargo that is free of any form of danger.
I agree with the best practice as it is aimed at putting the lives of travelers and citizens at priority. As such Airport Security Program can be seen as a feature that is deemed to not only protect but also increase the confidence of people who use airports to ship their cargos and also who travel using different airlines to and from our airports.
The program can be implemented in all areas of cargo management as it safeguards all types of cargo from theft and also securing merchandise from an incoming threat against incoming commodities such as drugs and bombs. The concern can even multiply when shipping goods across the borders or even within the states of the country.
If Airport Security Program would not be implemented, it means that not only the cargo is put at risk, but also people and passengers who prefer air travel to other forms of traveling in and out of the country of between different states in the country. This means that airlines would be putting merchandise and human lives in jeopardy.
Conclusion and Recommendation
Airport Security Program is a procedure that safeguards airports against any form of attack and also safeguards products and cargo being shipped by air in the country. The program requires that all airports have a slot set aside for TSA-approved Airport Security Program. Every cargo is screened prior to being shipped.
I would recommend that more people to be trained on the program which would ensure that more people have a knowhow of the different ways that cargo and human screening is done to eliminate any form of attack whatsoever.
AOPA.COM. (2019, October 31). AOPA’s Airport Watch Security. Retrieved March 03, 2020, from aopa.org: https://www.aopa.org/advocacy/airports-and-airspace/security-and-borders/airport-watch-security
Gillen, D. &. (2015). Aviation security: Costing, pricing, finance, and performance. Journal of Air Transport Management, 48, 1-12.
Namowitz, D. (2018, October 31). AOPA PUBLISHES AIRPORT SECURITY FACT SHEET. Retrieved March 03, 2020, from AOPA.org: https://www.aopa.org/news-and-media/all-news/2018/october/31/aopa-publishes-airport-security-fact-sheet
Poole, R. W. (2015). Cost-effective airport security policy. Securing transportation systems, 205.
Široký, J. &. (2018). Optimizing process of check-in and security check at airport terminals. In MATEC Web of Conferences, 01003(36). doi:https://doi.org/10.1051/matecconf/201823601003