TSA Amends Air Cargo Screening Regulations

The TSA yesterday posted a Federal Register notice requesting comments on the changes to the Air Cargo Screening Interim Final Rule.
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The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) amends the rule requiring 100 percent of cargo transported on passenger aircraft be screened by removing provisions that an independent reviewer can certify that an air shipper is meeting the cargo screening requirements.

On Aug. 18, 2011, the TSA posted a Federal Register notice requesting comments on the changes to the Air Cargo Screening Interim Final Rule (IFR), which was issued on Sept. 16, 2009. In the original document, the IFR established the “Certified Cargo Screening Facilities” (CCSFs) to screen cargo prior to transport on passenger aircraft. Under the IFR, each CCSF applicant had to successfully undergo an assessment of their facility by a TSA-approved validation firm or by the TSA.

In response to public comments, the amendment removes all validation firm and validator provisions, so TSA will conduct the assessments of the applicant’s facility to determine if certification is appropriate.

The IFR also required that if an aircraft operator or foreign air carrier screens cargo at an airport, it must do so as a CCSF. The amendment also deletes that requirement because aircraft operators are already screening cargo under a TSA-approved security program, so they do not need a separate certification to screen cargo at airport, according to the TSA.

The amendment also proposes a fee range for the processing of “security threat assessments,” and seeks comment on the proposed fee range and the methodology used to develop the fee.

The removal of the validation firm and validator provisions becomes effective and the deadline for comments is Sept. 19, 2011. Click here to view this Federal Register notice.

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