Aviation Security Basics
Aviation Security Basics
Nico Melendez (TSA Regional Spokesperson) gives expert video advice on: Why do I have to be at the airport so early? and more...
What is the purpose of aviation security?
The purpose of aviation security is to provide for the free movement of passengers and commerce through the airports.
Why do I have to be at the airport so early?
We traditionally ask passengers if they are going to be flying domestically to get to the airports two hours before their flight. If they are flying internationally, get to the airport three hours before your flight. You have to manipulate the parking, you have to check in and get your ticket, you have to get your bags screened, you have to get through security, you have to find your gate. We think that two hours is a good amount of time for domestic flights, but it's always a good idea to check with the airline. If you have some flexibility in scheduling your flight, you can schedule it during non-peak hours when you know there's not going to be a lot of people at the airport.
What is the "Department of Homeland Security"?
The Department of Homeland Security is the agency that was created by the Bush Administration in the summer of 2002 that combined 22 component agencies that were in separate departments of the Federal Government. By creating the Department of Homeland Security, we were assured to concentrate all of our efforts on securing the homeland.
What is the "Transportation Security Administration"?
The Transportation Security Administration is a component agency of the Department of Homeland Security that was created on November 19, 2001 in response to the terrorist attacks of September 11 of the same year. The Transport Security Administration is an agency that was created to enhance aviation security at all of our nation's 45 airports. At the same time, the legislation called for us to work security issues on all modes of transportation, including mass transit, the trains and buses, pipelines, and every other thing that moves commerce or people, to ensure that we thwart any kind of an attack and address any kind of a vulnerability.
What is the purpose of the TSA?
The TSA was created to enhance aviation security and security in all modes of transportation. The mission statement of the TSA calls for us to provide for the secure movement of passengers and cargo, be it on ships, trains, buses or airplanes. There's not one layer of security that's more important than another in the TSA. They all work together to provide aviation security as we know it today, and they all play a role in securing our airports.