AMERICAS: TSA cargo screening requirement hits 75%

The US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) requires air carriers to screen 75 per cent of all cargo transported from a US airport on a passenger aircraft from 1 May 2010. This is the interim benchmark from TSA as the mandate for 100 per cent of all cargo transported on passenger aircraft to be screened by […]


The US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) requires air carriers to screen 75 per cent of all cargo transported from a US airport on a passenger aircraft from 1 May 2010. This is the interim benchmark from TSA as the mandate for 100 per cent of all cargo transported on passenger aircraft to be screened by 1 August 2010 draws near.

The specific impact of the new requirement for 75 per cent on the market is uncertain, however it will significantly increase the volume of cargo required to be screened by air carriers and/or Certified Cargo Screening Facilities (CCSFs) before it can be loaded on a passenger aircraft.

Meanwhile, the Air Cargo Security Alliance (ACSA), a coalition of 300 USbased indirect air carriers, direct shippers and customs brokers, has formally petitioned Janet Napolitano, head of the US Department of Homeland Security, to implement a federal cargo screening programme paid for by a US$0.05 cent per pound fee on all shipments.

According to Michael Whately of ACSA, the TSA’s Certified Cargo Screening Program will “force most small to mid-size forwarders and indirect air carriers (IAC) to face insurmountable costs and logistical hurdles before they could even enter the market-place. This will result in reduced competition and just-in-time shipping options for businesses will be severely limited. For many, the 100 per cent screening mandate without a federal screening programme operating at all American airports makes economic viability impossible.”