GA Border Checks To Include Screening For Nukes

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The Domestic Nuclear Detection Office (DNDO), which is part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), is working to strengthen its ability to detect radiation and nuclear devices in the international GA environment. The DNDO is evaluating equipment that it will use to support this mission, according to a "General Aviation Fact Sheet" published by the DHS on Monday. The goal is to "further minimize the vulnerability of GA and private aircraft flights being used to deliver illicit materials, transport dangerous individuals or employ the aircraft as a weapon," the fact sheet says. The DHS plans to screen aircraft at sites outside the border, to ensure that illicit materials do not enter the U.S.

Some GA pilots are already encountering this increased scrutiny. Dave MacRae, who has flown back and forth across the U.S.-Canada border for decades, told AVweb this week that a Customs and Border Protection officer in Buffalo, N.Y., swept his Cessna 210 for nuclear material last Sunday. It's apparently something anyone flying across the border had better get used to. MacRae shared his thoughts on that with AVweb's Russ Niles, and you can hear their conversation in tomorrow's AVweb podcast.