More NBAA security-training sessions added for this month

 - March 19, 2008, 6:54 AM

NBAA announced at its convention in Orlando, Fla., last month that additional dates have been scheduled for its new “Security Training for Part 91 Operators” seminar, completion of which is the first step to a TSA Access Certificate (TSAAC).

The seminar dates are November 12 in St. Louis; November 14, Dallas; November 18, Chicago; December 2, Atlanta; December 3, West Palm Beach, Fla.; and December 5, Washington, D.C. In September, NBAA announced October dates for Boston; Detroit; Burbank, Calif.; and Seattle. Registration costs $250 for members and $600 (which includes a one-year NBAA membership) for nonmembers.

NBAA believes the TSAAC eventually might grant certificate holders access to areas with temporary flight restrictions (TFRs) equivalent to that of the airlines. It could also be used as a template to restore general aviation access to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) for “qualified” operators.

The seminar is based on the proof-of-concept security project developed in partnership with the TSA that has given participants the materials needed to train their companies’ employees to meet the standards required to obtain a TSAAC.

NBAA already has Part 91 corporate operators based at Teterboro Airport, N.J., who have received TSAACs, allowing them to conduct international flights without TSA waivers. The training has been expanded to cover flight departments based at Westchester County Airport (HPN) in White Plains, N.Y., and Morristown Municipal Airport (MMU), N.J.

Although the TSA has not yet expanded the proof-of-concept security project beyond TEB, HPN and MMU, NBAA said the program might be launched nationally after January 1.

The objectives of the seminar are to validate a benchmark protocol and security process for business aviation; provide an efficient, straightforward and cost-effective response to security concerns; allow operators to be in a position to capitalize immediately on the benefits of the TSAAC program, if it is launched nationally after the first of the year; and satisfy the training requirements for the TSAAC.

In other GA security developments, AOPA teamed with the Michigan Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Aeronautics to distribute Airport Watch kits to every flight school in the state. New rules that replace the state’s criminal background check for all flight students require flight-school managers to establish security procedures.
Michigan’s new law requires flight schools to post signs asking pilots to report suspicious activity and provide instructional materials for identifying those activities. Airport Watch was developed in cooperation with the TSA.

The Michigan law also requires flight schools to positively identify flight students and renter pilots; maintain tighter control of aircraft access; and ensure close supervision of student pilots.

AOPA also weighed in on a plan by the San Luis Obispo County, Calif. supervisors to recommend a TFR over the Diablo Canyon nuclear powerplant. The TFR would be two nautical miles in radius up to 2,000 feet over a proposed spent-fuel storage facility to be built there.

The association reminded the county board that the FAA already has a long-standing advisory to pilots to avoid circling or loitering over nuclear powerplants. In a letter to the secretary of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, AOPA noted that other federal agencies already have taken actions directed at or that encompass GA operators, as have commercial operators and the aviation industry as a whole.