All Things Travel: What’s Changed At Logan Airport Since 9/11?
BOSTON (CBS) – Security has been the watchword at Logan Airport since 9/11/01.
The FAA, the TSA and Massport, which runs the Boston airport, have more than 2,000 people involved in security and have spent more than $250 million in the last decade that, hopefully, will keep almost 28 million passengers safe this year.
But questions remain.
Why do people still have to take off their shoes?
And why did it take 10 years to build and open the country’s first airport Joint Terrorism Task Force center at an airport at Logan?
Massport is justifiably proud that its daily security briefing that takes place in the media room has taken place every day since 9/11/01.
Nine months later, the first TSA employees arrived at Logan Airport.
By December 31, 2002, Logan was the first and only major U.S. airport to meet the federally mandated deadline to have 100 percent in-line baggage screening for passengers.
Cargo screening took several more years to implement.
It was not until August of 2006, that Troop F of The Massachusetts State Police started roadblocks to conduct random vehicle searches.
Last year was an important year for security at Logan.
In March, Boston became the first airport to deploy full body scanners.
The airport began implementation of much greater use of close circuit TV systems in most areas of the airport.
For all of the technical improvements, domestic passengers are urged to get to Logan an hour before their flight departs.
In the case of international passengers, primarily leaving in the early evening hours, at least one-and-a-half hours is needed.
The next big problem to be resolved at all U.S. airports is the number of bags carried on to planes as the airlines now charge for extra bags.
These items slow down both the security lines and boarding the planes at the gates.
Back on 9/11/01, airline shuttles to New York carried about 80 percent of the passengers from Boston to New York’s three airports and Amtrak had less than 20 percent of that business.
Today the railroad carries over 50 percent of that business and the bus travel to New York is booming from South Station.
The TSA is virtually invisible at South Station.
The war on terrorism continues.
Bob Weiss and “All Things Travel” can be heard weekends on WBZ NewsRadio 1030.