Tester Strengthens Airport Security, Protects Montanans from Terrorist Activity

Senator Continues Fight for Full Body Scanners, Enhanced Security at Baggage Claim and Check-In

(U.S. Senate)-Following the terrorist attacks in Brussels that left 32 people dead, Senator Jon Tester is continuing his fight to protect Montanans from terrorist activity by strengthening airport security.

Tester successfully added an amendment to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reauthorization bill currently being debated in the Senate to study the feasibility of installing full body scanners in every airport across the country. Currently, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) prioritizes installing full body scanners in urban airports, which has ‎left airports in Helena and Great Falls without the most up-to-date security equipment.

Additionally, Tester helped add an amendment to the bill that doubles the number of security teams monitoring baggage claims and check-in kiosks, and also increases law enforcement training for active shooter situations.

“As terrorist activity continues to increase across the world, we must realize that our national security is only as strong as our weakest link,” said Tester, Montana’s only member of the Homeland Security Committee. “These efforts will strengthen airport security, keep travelers safe, and ensure smaller airports have the most up-to-date equipment.”

Last week, Tester pressed the TSA‎ to prioritize the installation of full body scanners in rural airports during a Senate Homeland Security hearing.

Last month, Tester questioned the TSA’s Administrator on the increased threats that smaller airports without full body scanners face.

Tester is also fighting to include an amendment on the FAA reauthorization bill that will empower states to decide whether they want to oversee exorbitant air ambulance rates and services.

All these efforts follow Tester’s tour of the Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport to see the security challenges airports in Montana are currently facing.