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DHS Proposes Increased Security Measures For International Private Aircraft

EAA Evaluating Impact On General Aviation

September 11, 2007 — EAA staff is evaluating a U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) proposal announced Tuesday that would require operators of all private aircraft entering or departing the United States to provide detailed information on their flights, passengers, and aircraft. The agency has developed a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) titled, "Advanced Information on Private Aircraft Arriving and Departing the United States," that would require operators to electronically provide advance notice of arrival; complete passenger and crew manifest data; and aircraft information.

Of particular concern are the effects of the proposed regulations on small aircraft travel between our direct neighbors to the north and the south, and what new procedures private pilots would have to comply with. EAA will identify any potentially adverse effects on small aircraft operations and, if appropriate, submit comments including revisions that could mitigate them, while addressing national security concerns.

The DHS has stated that the newly required information would have to be provided one hour prior to departure to and from the United States via the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Electronic Advance Passenger Information System (eAPIS) or an approved alternate system.

"This rule is designed to further protect the nation by improving our ability to identify threats on flights to and from the United States," said Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff. "We have a similar rule in place that allows us to assess the risk of commercial aircraft passengers on these flights and we are now taking steps to expand that capability to include passengers on international flights by private aircraft."

"The NPRM will propose to clarify landing rights procedures and departure clearance procedures as well as expressly setting forth CBP's authority to restrict aircraft from landing in the U.S. based on security and/or risk assessments; or based on those assessments, to specifically designate and limit the airports from where the aircraft may land or depart."

In a news release, DHS describes a two-phased approach to implement the new security measures. In Phase I, DHS will soon publish the NPRM in the Federal Register and seek public comments prior to issuing a final rule. In Phase II, DHS will work with CBP, private aircraft owners and operators, and foreign partners to develop procedures to address additional security vulnerabilities for international private aircraft operations at their last point of departure prior to entering U.S. airspace. EAA will work with DHS officials in developing these procedures.

To view the NPRM, visit http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/eAPIS_NPRM_091107.pdf. When published, public comments will be accepted at www.regulations.gov. Submissions must include the agency name and docket number: "USCBP 2007-0064."

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