Airports to screen workers in pilot program

Washington DC
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Seven US airports are planning a 90-day test of workers starting in May after a highly-publicized gun running episode in Orlando last year.

Funded by the fiscal year 2008 Appropriations Bill, the pilot program will cover workers at Boston Logan, Jacksonville International, Denver International and Kansas City International. Other airports in the program include airports in Eugene and North Bend, Oregon.

The airports volunteered to participate in the pilot, for which $15 million has been designated. The US Transportation Security Administration is conducting the pilot.

In the Orlando case, employees smuggled guns and marijuana on a flight to Puerto Rico.

In the meantime, Orlando began screening all workers who have access to secure areas at a cost of $5 million in 2007, an airport spokeswoman says, noting that Orlando and Miami International airport are the only airports that screen workers daily.