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AOPA opposes airspace restrictions over natural gas terminal

AOPA opposes airspace restrictions over natural gas terminal

Floating terminal

An airspace restriction. Seems like everybody wants one, whether they need it or not.

The latest to pull a Daley (who continually requests politically motivated airspace restrictions) is Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, who's recommended airspace restrictions over a proposed natural gas terminal in the middle of Long Island Sound.

AOPA objects.

AOPA President Phil Boyer told the attorney general in a recent letter that the nation's top security agencies have determined on numerous occasions that airspace restrictions over such facilities are not "appropriate or necessary."

"That reinforces the fact that airspace restrictions prove to be a poor solution when addressing the issue of physical plant security for all types of facilities," Boyer said.

"Airspace restrictions do nothing more then negatively impact the users of the national airspace system whom are law abiding citizens."

Boyer reminded the attorney general of the many steps already taken to enhance general aviation security, including the Transportation Security Administration's industry-supported guidelines for airport security, the vetting of pilot names against terrorist watch lists, counterfeit-resistant pilot certificates used in conjunction with government-issued photo identification, and AOPA's Airport Watch program.

"Our members recognize the responsibilities the nation's pilots must assume to help keep the United States safe and secure," said Boyer. "This includes being vigilant for suspicious activity and properly securing their aircraft."

AOPA also pointed out that existing regulations ( Notice to Airmen 4/0811) advise pilots to maintain safe distances from power plants, dams, refineries, and industrial complexes, including natural gas facilities.

January 23, 2007

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