The United States Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has taken the decision to lift requirements for so called air cargo screening reports. This new development which was pushed for earlier by TIACA’s Chairman, Oliver Evans, in a letter to the TSA last September, is welcomed by TIACA and other organizations within the U.S.A.
This means that air cargo volume screening reporting will no longer be mandatory from the industry. This was something which TIACA warned about late last year and signaled that it would burden
the industry with unnecessary strain.
Doug Britten, TIACA’s Secretary General states that “this will significantly relieve the reporting burden on industry, saving many labor and IT hours.”
Quite a turnaround for the TSA, who in the past have not been known for much flexibility.
The ruling was applied to all passenger carriers as well as to more than 1,200 certified freight forwarders and shippers in the U.S.
Britten went on to say that “we applaud this move as a positive step towards adopting a risk-based approach versus forensic compliance.”
Mr Evans’ letter to the TSA Administrator, John Pistole had commented on the collaborative approach by the TSA in implementing security programs and their successful implementation of 100 percent
mandatory screening for all cargo on passenger planes into and out of U.S. airports.
The letter went on to suggest that the TSA’s screening achievement be certified and the reporting requirement should be abolished.
This has now come about.
Oliver Evans hopes that this new decision will allow the government and the industry to focus their limited resources on measures that can really benefit security.
TIACA has maintained that regular and ongoing inspections of cargo screening processes have made the reports anyway unnecessary and that staff and IT resources could be better utilized by both the industry and government bodies.
This comes at a time where in early June of this year, a coalition representing the air freight forwarding companies called on the U.S. federal government to help get input from small and medium sized forwarders before they expanded the so called Air Cargo Advanced Screening (ACAS) program.
The consortium which had approached the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the TSA was made up of members from the Airforwarders Association (AfA), National Customs Brokers and Forwarders Association of America (NCBFAA), The International Air Cargo Association (TIACA) and the Express Delivery and Logistics Association (XLA).
These had jointly sent letters to the both CBP and TSA.
It looks like there is positive movement in the U.S. with regards to the proper ways and means of implementing “fruitful” cargo screening processes which can be effective and give as little administrative paperwork as possible.
John Mc Donagh