...While ATC Site Goes Unprotected
And while Congress seems be preoccupied with security aboard aircraft, other critical elements of the air transportation system will have to get along without it, according to the National Air Traffic Controllers Association. A new TRACON (Terminal Radar Approach Control) outside Seattle will open later this month without the metal detectors, remote-control cameras and armed guards planned for the facility. Instead, it will be up to staff inside who to let in. All the security measures have been designed into the building but the FAA says it doesn't have the money to implement them, according to the Tacoma News Tribune. The paper said budget cuts forced the agency to abandon the security plans last September. "While working the airplanes, we'll have to determine if someone is OK," said NATCA rep Steve Olsen. Washington Sen. Maria Cantwell plans to protest the security cutbacks to the FAA.