Fri, Sep 15, 2006
Cameras Going Up At Quakertown Airport, Others
It isn't so much a fear
of terrorism, as it is petty burglary that is the driving force
behind a move by the Bucks County (PA) Airport Authority to install
security cameras and other measures at several Lehigh Valley-area
general aviation airports.
BCCA member John Mininger says the cameras will be installed
this year at Quakertown (KUKT) Airport... with other airports
taking similar action to increase security. It's isn't that airport
officials believe al-Qaeda will sneak in and steal a Piper,
Mininger said. The move to beef up security is in response to a
series of thefts of airplane radios, and other expensive
"It's a concern of our tenants that we do everything reasonably
possible to try to provide as much security for their aircraft as
we can," he told The Morning Call newspaper.
The thefts include an August 2004 break-in at Quakertown, in
which more than $28,000 in radio equipment was pilfered. Two
break-ins this year at Pennridge Airport (N70) resulted in the loss
of $39,000 worth of GPS equipment, and other items.
As many large airports have seen significantly increased
security measures in the five years since 9/11, smaller facilities
have largely escaped notice -- relying on local efforts to spot
signs of trouble.
TSA spokesman Darrin Kaysar says smaller GA airports do not pose
as great a threat to national security as larger facilities -- a
position also supported by pilot advocacy groups, such as the
Airplane Owners and Pilots Association.
"You have to look at the number of travelers, what's the
impact," he said. "TSA does not believe that general aviation
facilities and airports pose a significant and immediate
It seems that when it comes to general aviation... the true
threat really is closer to home.
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