KaiserAir battens down security hatches

 - May 6, 2008, 7:02 AM

On the subject of security procedures, Sandy Waters, v-p of KaiserAir at Oakland (Calif.) International Airport, said, “There has never been a successful hijacking of a charter or air taxi aircraft in history, and there is no reason to impose the same requirements [as those for aircraft over 95,000 lb] on smaller aircraft.” Still, Waters has voluntarily developed scrupulous security measures specifically for KaiserAir–measures the company hopes will serve as a model for federal regulations for FBOs and the charter industry. Founded in 1946 by industrialist Henry Kaiser, KaiserAir is a full-service aircraft management company and FBO specializing in operation and maintenance of Gulfstream, Raytheon Hawker and Cessna business aircraft.

Employees are now subject to pre-hire fingerprint checks and thorough background investigations. Flight crews, line personnel and maintenance technicians are subject to random drug and alcohol tests. Before every flight on a KaiserAir charter aircraft, each passenger and his baggage is identified and verified. Boarding is conducted at the private terminal only. The area is secured by a 12-ft-high fence with security guards protecting private gates. Since September 11, KaiserAir requires flight crews and passengers to check in at the customer service counter so that staff members can escort them to and from their aircraft on the ramp. Flight crewmembers are also required to identify all of their passengers and verify the owner of each piece of baggage before the airplane is loaded.