The following statement was issued today by Capt. Duane Woerth, president of the Air Line Pilots Association, International, in response to action by the Senate Commerce Committee to report out a bill that would permit the arming of cargo airline pilots:
“We applaud the action taken today by the Senate Commerce Committee, in unanimously adopting an amendment offered by Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), which is identical to her bill, S.516, mandating the arming of cargo airline pilots. Senator Boxer has been a vocal advocate of giving all commercial pilots the ability to participate in this important security program, and ALPA is grateful for her dedication to this issue.
“This clears the way for Senate action on this crucial security enhancement, as part of S.165, a bill that deals with other cargo security issues. Cargo airline security frequently has been overlooked in the post-9/11 rush to fix passenger security. We look forward to working with both the Senate and the House, where a companion bill, H.R. 765, has been introduced, as the next step toward improving security in cargo airline operations.
ALPA represents 66,000 airline pilots at 42 airlines in the U.S. and Canada. Its Web site is at http://www.alpa.org.