FAA tests drone detection system at JFK The FAA and its government partners are expanding research on ways to detect “rogue” drones around airports. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and its government, industry and academia partners have joined forces to evaluate drone detection technology at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York. Over the last two years, the FAA has received numerous reports from pilots and residents about unmanned aircraft systems – UAS, or “drones” – around some of the nation’s busiest airports, including JFK. “We face many difficult challenges as we integrate rapidly evolving UAS technology into our complex and highly regulated airspace,” said Marke “Hoot” Gibson, FAA Senior Advisor on UAS Integration. “This effort at JFK reflects everyone’s commitment to safety.” Beginning May 2, the FAA conducted evaluations at JFK to study the effectiveness of a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) UAS detection system in a commercial airport environment. Five different rotorcraft and fixed wing UAS participat- 18 ed in the evaluations, and about 40 separate tests took place. The JFK evaluation involved extensive government inter-agency collaboration, and cooperation from industry and academia. The tests expanded on research performed earlier this year at Atlantic City International Airport. In addition to the FAA and the FBI, the agencies combining forces in this research included the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Department of Justice, Queens District Attorney’s Office and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. DHS and the FBI want to identify unauthorized UAS operators for law enforcement purposes, and the FAA’s mission is to provide a safe and efficient airport environment for both manned and unmanned air traffic. “We applaud the FBI and FAA for their efforts to detect and track unmanned aerial systems (UAS),” said Thomas Bosco, Port Authority Aviation Director. “We look forward to supporting continued U.S. Government efforts to identify and deploy countermeasures to neutralize the threat posed by rogue UASs.” The team evaluating the FBI’s detection system also included contributions from one of the six FAA-designated UAS test sites. The Griffiss International Airport test site in Rome, NY, provided expertise in planning the individual tests as well as the flight commander for the tests and two of the UAS used. The FY 2016 Appropriations law mandates that the FAA continue research into detection of UAS in airport environments. The agency is continuing to formulate an interagency strategy to evaluate detection systems in a variety of airport environments.
Law Enforcement/Public Safety Los Angeles Airport Police reject plan to work ten more years to get same retirement package as LAPD and LAPD Port Police 19 LOS ANGELES, CA - Almost one hundred Los Angeles Airport Police Officers from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), LA/Ontario International Airport (ONT) and Van Nuys Airport (VNY) attended Thursday’s meeting of the Board of Airport Commissioners at LAX to voice their concern about Los Angeles World Airport’s (LAWA) decision to continue treating their lives, service and commitment as not equal to those of other City police agencies. During today’s public comment section, officer after officer reiterated their unhappiness with the City’s decision to provide a retirement package that forcesAirport Police officers to work an additional decade to be on par with officers from the Los Angeles Police Department and Los Angeles Port Police-also City police agencies. “Everyday the City of Los Angeles tells me my life isn’t as valuable or important as other officers by refusing to give me equal pay and benefits for equal work,” said LAXPD senior leader officer and Los Angeles Airport Peace Officers’ Association (LAAPOA) president Marshall McClain. “As it stands now, Airport Police officer will have to work an additional decade or more to achieve the same retirement package that’s currently available to Los Angeles police officers in the City and at the Port. That’s more years of putting our lives on the line. More years of breathing in bad carcinogens at the airport and risking injury. Los Angeles takes great pride in treating everyone equally-except for when it comes to its police officers at the airport.” Officers reminded the sevenmember board that their lives, families, service and commitment to the City of Los Angeles and its three airports mattered. Officers pointed out that they shouldn’t have to work an additional decade in order to retire with the benefits of the 30-year pension plan currently being offered to