VKX airport (Home of SuperAWOS) CLOSED
VKX airport (Home of SuperAWOS) CLOSED
DC-3 airport closed after repeated security violations
http://www.aopa.org/whatsnew/newsitems/ … tomac.html
November 3, 2005
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has closed Potomac Airfield, one of the so-called DC-3 airports located within the Flight Restricted Zone (FRZ) surrounding Washington, D.C. Tuesday's closure followed repeated violations of the security requirements placed on the airport, the agency said.
"AOPA worked hard to get Potomac and the other DC-3 airports reopened to general aviation with special security requirements after the 9/11 closings, and we want to see GA pilots continue to have access to the capital area," said Andy Cebula, AOPA senior vice president of government and technical affairs. "We've taken a careful look at the circumstances of this closure, and it boils down to the airport manager [David Wartofsky, SuperAWOS] and the TSA coming to agreement on the way to resolve the issue."
The airport and pilots operating there are subject to special security rules because of the field's location only 7 miles from the Capitol and within the FRZ. With the immediate closure of the airport, a number of aircraft were stranded.
TSA is working on a plan to allow those aircraft to be relocated while it continues to work with Potomac Airfield management to resolve the problems that led to the closure.
Re: VKX airport (Home of SuperAWOS) CLOSED
UPDATED November 3, 2005 - WHAT IS ACTUALLY GOING ON WITH TSA's CLOSURE OF POTOMAC AIRFIELD?
"Transportation Security Administration officials told the Experimental Aircraft Association late Tuesday that closing Potomac Airfield had nothing to do with any security threats."
So why did TSA close the Potomac Airfield, located near Washington DC, if there was no threat?
Obvious to anyone who travels, many of TSA security "fixes" imposed on the public and the private sector are ineffective and burdensome on the private citizen.
One private citizen, David Wartofsky, a pilot approved by the Administration to fly in Washington DC's most protected airspace, and the owner of the small Potomac Airfield in Maryland, is finally picking up the gauntlet, saying, "Enough is enough."
Recently, Wartofsky publicly challenged TSA's implementation of airspace security policy.
TSA replied by using a poorly disguised 'security violation' to shut down Wartofsky's business and to drive away his customers.
An insider at TSA this morning confirmed to Wartofsky that in fact, TSA took this action in retaliation to Wartofsky's challenge, as an attempt to silence him; by denying Wartofsky's more than 400 pilots from continuing to use his airport. Every pilot operating from Potomac was approved by TSA, Secret Service, and other interested agencies, many with the highest security clearances in the country; including pilots who fly blackhawks and F16's in the defense of the nation's capital.
Clearly TSA's action is an abuse of authority, and a violation of the public trust.
At Wartofsky's request, Congress is now reviewing the statutory authority under which TSA can interfere with private-sector security programs. He has also asked the White House for clarification of prior Executive Office decisions that re-opened this airspace to legitimate travelers and pilots.
At the behest of the TSA, the FAA has proposed making permanent the often questioned airspace 'Air Defense Identification Zone' (ADIZ) around the nation's capital.
In his most recent widely read aviation newsletter, Wartofsky very publicly identified shortcomings in TSA security policy implementation in the national capital area, and offered more workable and more effective alternatives to merely rubber stamping the current flawed ADIZ program.
For political reasons, not for any real security concerns, TSA shut him down.
Wartofsky points out, "TSA is merely setting up the private sector as the fall-guy for ill-conceived Federal policy."
Wartofsky has been coordinating his private sector security program with the agencies responsible for national capital area security, a function TSA was supposed to be doing for the last three years.
"The only action taken by TSA in three years has been to retract the last action TSA took three years ago."
THE BIG PICTURE
One private-citizen is challenging the authority of a Federal agency to interfere with business decisions, to require federal sector responsibilities to be funded and performed on the back of the private sector, or to be compelled to confiscate nail clippers from good Americans under the guise of national security.
Perhaps it is time somebody finally picked up that gauntlet.
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