WASHINGTON – The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) today launched crewPASS, a test program designed to evaluate expedited access to secure areas of airports for properly credentialed commercial flight deck crew members. The program is a mandate of the 9/11 bill and will be evaluated at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport, Pittsburgh International Airport and Columbia (S.C.) Metropolitan Airport.
Eligible flight deck crew members will enter the secure area of these checkpoints via the exit lane of the security checkpoint after presenting their airline-issued identification and another form of ID to transportation security officers (TSOs). TSOs will check these credentials via a secure, real-time flight deck crew member database that includes a picture and other information to verify the individual's identity. Flight deck crew members who utilize this program will be subject to random screening, observation by behavior detection officers and other layers of security.
"We are very interested in developing ways to increase security through enhanced identity verification," said John Sammon, assistant administrator, TSA. "We are also interested in evaluating this program's ability to increase security by decreasing the number of people being screened, which allows our behavior detection officers to focus on individuals that exhibit suspicious behavior."
This test, which is being conducted in cooperation with the Air Line Pilots Association, will be limited to flight deck crew members in uniform and is scheduled to conclude after 60 days, at which time a full evaluation will be made.