Experience-based security measures more viable than Washington politics

The members of the US Senate and House of Representatives have gone on summer recess for a few weeks after pushing through a revised antiterrorism bill which, among many other things, will force the air cargo industry to get all cargo inspected before it can be loaded on passenger aircraft andfreighters. As the impact of […]


The members of the US Senate and House of Representatives have gone on summer recess for a few weeks after pushing through a revised antiterrorism bill which, among many other things, will force the air cargo industry to get all cargo inspected before it can be loaded on passenger aircraft andfreighters.

As the impact of this security document is likely to be massive, it is probably a good time to analyse the consequences of this bill, which has meanwhile been signed into law by US President George W. Bush. Although the general consensus is that security for both passengers and pilots is of vital importance to the safe and secure transport of cargo, the sweeping measures announced in the bill have alarmed a number of trade groups.

In a nutshell, the groups fear chaos, delays and unrealistic increases in handling costs and transport rates.The most vocal opposition among the trade organisations is the International Cargo Security Council (ICSC), which said it is opposed to the 100 percent screening of all inbound air and sea cargo the legislation requires. ICSC is a non-profi t organisation comprised of companies, individuals and government agencies involved in the safe and secure transport of cargo.