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Do You Have All Of Your Badges Yet?

by John M. White |

With the June 1st deadline approaching for implementation of Security Directive 1542-04-08F most of us are probably unprepared and unaware of the consequences of this new rule. In short it requires anyone who has unescorted access to secure areas of a commercial airport (ie any airport with airline activity, Hersch) to have completed a background check AND have an airport badge. This means if you land at an airport other than your home base, and need to access your aircraft, you must be escorted out onto the ramp by airport personnel, or alternatively have a badge for every commercial airport you ever plan on visiting. Because general aviation operations do not normally follow a regular schedule, and the purpose of personal aircraft is to allow quick, easy transportation to and from many locations on your own schedule, this requirement will put an incredible burden on those of us who operate general aviation aircraft. One of the benefits of corporate aviation is its flexibility, particularly in light of the decline or demise of airlines, the reduction in airline service, the incredible waste of time to travel on the airlines (see TSA) and the lack of service, this new rule will really put a dent in general aviation. The alphabet organizations (AOPA, NBAA, EAA, NATA and National Association of State Aviation Officials) have all signed a letter urging the TSA to drop this rule and go through the federal rule making process so that general aviation's concerns can be heard and considered before implementing any changes. AOPA's executive vice president stated that "Because the TSA never consulted the people who know the most about general aviation, it developed a set of requirements that ignore the realities of general aviation flying and the need for access at airports." Let's hope someone in Washington will listen to those of us out here in the hinterland and use some common sense instead of brute power. Business in this country needs help, not more regulation, if we are to ever recover economically. Call your legislators today and urge them to stop this reckless regulation before it is too late. Until next time keep your wings straight and level Hersch! JetAviator7 "Every flying machine has its own unique characteristics, some good, some not so good. Pilots naturally fly the craft in such a manner as to take advantage of its good characteristics and avoid the areas where it is not so good." — Neil Armstrong, quoted in 'Popular Mechanics,' June 2009.

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