[ RadSafe ] U.S. to Tighten Security on Private Jet Flights

Clayton J Bradt cjb01 at health.state.ny.us
Tue Mar 4 15:44:13 CST 2008

U.S. to Tighten Security on Private Jet Flights

The U.S. Homeland Security Department plans this year to take additional
steps to prevent small private jets from transporting weapons of mass
destruction into the United States, USA Today reported (see GSN, Dec. 5,
In an effort to prevent “a nuclear or (radioactive) dirty bomb or
biological weapons” from being smuggled into the country, passengers and
crew members of U.S.-bound private jets are set to soon be required provide
identifying information to security officials one hour before takeoff to
ensure they are not on terrorist watch lists, said Homeland Security
Secretary Michael Chertoff.
Chertoff said the agency might next require private jets and their
occupants to be screened overseas by U.S. Customs officials.
Homeland security analyst Randall Larsen expressed doubts about the plan.
“Bono and Bill Gates would be prevented from smuggling a nuke into the
U.S., but a terrorist with a nuke in a Gulfstream who takes off from a
remote airfield in Africa or Latin America … would have no problem getting
it to D.C.,” Larsen said. “Let's just hope the terrorists fly out of
(London's) Heathrow.”
Chertoff brushed off the doubts, saying a jet that is not cleared by
security officials “will not make it into the U.S. without being greeted by
a couple of F-16s” (Frank/Hall, USA Today, March 4).
Glad they're looking into this.  Who would have thought that fanatics would
try to use a private as a missile?

Clayton J. Bradt
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