Broadcast 1484 (Special Edition)

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Guest: David Hook. Topics: General aviation security, suborbital tourism security, the FAA and TSA. We welcomed David Hook back to the show to discuss updates and trends with aviation security, specifically general aviation and the upcoming suborbital space tourism. Please note that you are invited to comment, ask questions, and rate this program on the new Space Show blog, We started our discussion with the John and Martha King story at the Santa Barbara, California airport. You can read a brief description of this story at The guidelines mentioned by our guest and in the article can be found at David does do a good job of providing the background to this story, why it happened, and the nature of the problem. As you will hear, we got a call from Dr. Jurist who asked David if this problem was related to the issue of the FAA being unable to account for 119,00 general aviation aircraft due to questionable N numbers and registration issues. There are 357,000 such aircraft registered in the U.S. so this is a significant problem. David spent some time discussing this problem and what it means for aircraft and overall air security. Mr. Hook also explained the difference between a security vulnerability and a threat. We received some questions about expanding TSA security measures to trains and busses as well as suborbital space tourism. David had much to say about the vulnerability of ground transportation and their overall threat capacity as compared to an aircraft, even a general aviation aircraft. As we started the second segment, Mr. Hook updated us about trends and directions security may take regarding suborbital space tourism flights. As you will hear, David suggests that its likely that there will be at least some security regulations for such flights. Mr. Hook was asked about the recent pilot incident with cell phone videos on YouTube of the security areas at SFO in which he depicted TSA vulnerabilities. This took us into a discussion about Flight Deck Officers, Air Marshalls, and weapons on board an aircraft. David received questions from listeners, especially the one from Trent in Australia with his poll about flying were there no TSA in place, asking if people would still get on the plane. David then went into a discussion about his own personal methods of establishing for his benefit that there was good security on the plane. Listen to what he said was his methodology. With respect to what David told us he does on each flight, he sent the following article to me after the show which seemed to suggest doing exactly what Dave said he did regarding looking people square in the eye. Check this out: Toward the end of our program, we talked about what constituted ideal airport security and mitigating security risks. While I am sure you will find this discussion interesting, ultimately as you will hear, security stems from people, not equipment or electronics. If you have questions or comments for David Hook, please post them on the blog URL above. You can also email David at



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26 Dec 2010 David Hook
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