Local airport security measures

By: Ruth Baker Email
By: Ruth Baker Email

Some recent seizures of items at airports across the country have the Transportation Security Administration concerned.

A TSA bulletin that was never meant to be made public reportedly cites "wires, switches, pipes and cell phone components" were found inside checked bags at four U.S. airports Thursday.

They say this could be possible evidence of a dry run for a terror attack, and perhaps a test of security at smaller airports.

Raising the question: How safe are our local airports?

Pilot Joe Portman says the idea of a terrorist using a non-commercial plane to attack Texoma is pretty unlikely.

"There's this perception that a small aircraft would be used as a weapon which is actually pretty ludicrous," Portman said.

But he says extra security measures are a good idea, regardless.
And the Federal Aviation Administration agrees.

"It's under the gun now since 9-11 a lot of aviation businesses have failed a lot of things have gotten out of control, the federal government pops up these restrictive flying areas all the time," Portman said.

That's why the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, or the AOPA, put the Airport Watch Program in place.

It encourages pilots to be on the lookout for any suspicious activity at small airports.

"We don't have any really active security guards or warning devices we use the pilots awareness," said Jeff Miller, with the Sherman Public Works Department.

Portman says this kind of security works.

"We tend to recognize each other it's a very friendly community it's very open the big thing is to look for people out of place," he said.

AOPA representative Ross Richardson says it's a way for fellow pilots to do their part to keep our home airports, and travelers, safe.

"Are we going to have terrorist attacks in Sherman? I don't think so but I don't want to become complacant", Portman said.

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