FAA fines Port Authority for airport violations - New York News

FAA fines Port Authority for airport violations

Posted: Updated:

VERENA DOBNIK | AP

NEW YORK (AP) — The federal government has cracked down on four area airports, including some of the nation's busiest, for what it calls "egregious" violations of safety and rescue regulations involving more than 250 police officers.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which oversees the states' bridges, tunnels and transit hubs, confirmed Monday that it was fined $3.5 million for training lapses going back to 2010 at Kennedy, LaGuardia, Newark Liberty and Teterboro airports. Kennedy and LaGuardia, in Queens, and Newark Liberty, in Newark, N.J., are among the most heavily trafficked airports in the country, each handling tens of millions of passengers a year.

The Port Authority officers attended recertification sessions, but some of the paperwork that proves it was lost or wasn't completed, agency spokeswoman Lisa MacSpadden said. In addition, an undetermined number of officers may have missed hours of training, MacSpadden said.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said in a statement Monday that the violations "were egregious, and they will not be tolerated."

The Port Authority has been working with the Federal Aviation Administration to rectify the failures, detailed in a new agreement between the Port Authority and the FAA to create an independent aircraft rescue and firefighting force without additional duties as police officers.

Port Authority officials say they currently are in full compliance with training requirements.

The Port Authority Police Benevolent Association on Monday denied that its officers' rescue efforts were unsafe.

"We would put up our firefighting response against any airport in the country, as borne out by repeated citations in National Air Traffic Safety Board reports," Port Authority PBA President Paul Nunziato said in a statement. "Our response provides the safest and most efficient method to address the myriad of issues facing our airports, including the ever present threat of terrorist attack, and we deploy more trained firefighters than any airport in the country."

Officers now provide critical life safety functions during plane incidents, from firefighting and passenger rescue to basic medical support and assisting in water rescues. They're also trained to operate sophisticated equipment.

The lapses were revealed during an FAA inspection of John F. Kennedy International Airport in December 2011.

That year and the first half of 2012, personnel at Kennedy were inadequately trained, according to the settlement. For a month in May and June 2012, the airport had 77 police officers serving 357 shifts without proper training, the FAA said.

During that time, the Port Authority also failed to ensure proper officer training for 341 days at LaGuardia and 378 days at Newark, the settlement said.

MacSpadden said that without the proper records, it's difficult for the bi-state agency to say how many officers may have missed portions of the 40-hour training or how many could prove recertification if documents were available.

The agency has recruited a veteran of the New York Police Department, Joseph Dunne, and a former Fire Department of New York commissioner, Tom Von Essen, to review "the underlying problems that led to systemic noncompliance," the FAA said Monday in a statement.

It said a nationwide search is underway for a new fire chief and captains.

LaHood said he expects all airports "to comply with our safety regulations and to correct any deficiencies immediately."

Officers are now required to undergo 80 hours of initial training and 40 hours of additional training each year. In the future, they'll receive an additional 75 hours of core training and the annual sessions will be expanded to 80 hours.

Port Authority

Federal Aviation Administration

  • Queens NewsQueens NewsMore>>

  • Queens Beer Week kicks off

    Queens Beer Week kicks off

    Friday, April 18 2014 10:19 PM EDT2014-04-19 02:19:20 GMT
    Queens wants to be known as New York City's beer capital. Queens Beer Week kicked off on Friday to celebrate the borough's crafty breweries and the more than 60 venues that serve their beer. Dan Bronson of Crescent and Vine in Astoria is the bearded brains behind the inaugural Queens Beer Week. He organized it all. The nine-day celebration of beers brewed in Queens.
    Queens wants to be known as New York City's beer capital. Queens Beer Week kicked off on Friday to celebrate the borough's crafty breweries and the more than 60 venues that serve their beer. Dan Bronson of Crescent and Vine in Astoria is the bearded brains behind the inaugural Queens Beer Week. He organized it all. The nine-day celebration of beers brewed in Queens.
  • Community celebrates renovated Queens Library branch damaged by Sandy

    Community celebrates renovated Queens Library branch damaged by Sandy

    Friday, April 18 2014 5:13 PM EDT2014-04-18 21:13:20 GMT
    It's been nearly a year and a half since Superstorm Sandy tore through the Queens Library Arverne branch in the Rockaways. Now it is back in business.Sandy left behind 4 feet of water. A massive renovation -- gutting, cleaning, repainting, rewiring -- was needed to get everything back up to speed. The library, which reopened March 18, is a vital part of the community.
    It's been nearly a year and a half since Superstorm Sandy tore through the Queens Library Arverne branch in the Rockaways. Now it is back in business.Sandy left behind 4 feet of water. A massive renovation -- gutting, cleaning, repainting, rewiring -- was needed to get everything back up to speed. The library, which reopened March 18, is a vital part of the community.
  • Christians around world mark Good Friday

    Christians around world mark Good Friday

    Friday, April 18 2014 1:34 PM EDT2014-04-18 17:34:50 GMT
    From the Holy Land to the streets of New York City, Christians have commemorated the crucifixion of Jesus Christ in Good Friday prayers and processions. Thousands of Christian pilgrims filled the cobblestone alleyways of the Old City on Friday along the Via Dolorosa, Latin for the "Way of Suffering." In NYC, Timothy Cardinal Dolan and Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio lead followers across the Brooklyn Bridge.
    From the Holy Land to the streets of New York City, Christians have commemorated the crucifixion of Jesus Christ in Good Friday prayers and processions. Thousands of Christian pilgrims filled the cobblestone alleyways of the Old City on Friday along the Via Dolorosa, Latin for the "Way of Suffering." In NYC, Timothy Cardinal Dolan and Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio lead followers across the Brooklyn Bridge.
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Record stores survive and thrive in Brooklyn

    Record stores survive and thrive in Brooklyn

    Friday, April 18 2014 10:59 PM EDT2014-04-19 02:59:51 GMT
    When you hear about a place that still sells records, located in a hip neighborhood in the borough of Brooklyn, you enter that store with certain expectations. One of them being: you hope the guy behind the counter talks about music the way Cory Fierman does."I think it's just like the most important thing to you," he says. "I don't know how to describe it. It's the most important thing to me. It's like another language."Cory manages Greenpoint's Academy Records Annex, where they want you ...
    When you hear about a place that still sells records, located in a hip neighborhood in the borough of Brooklyn, you enter that store with certain expectations. One of them being: you hope the guy behind the counter talks about music the way Cory Fierman does."I think it's just like the most important thing to you," he says. "I don't know how to describe it. It's the most important thing to me. It's like another language."Cory manages Greenpoint's Academy Records Annex, where they want you ...
  • Queens Beer Week kicks off

    Queens Beer Week kicks off

    Friday, April 18 2014 10:19 PM EDT2014-04-19 02:19:20 GMT
    Queens wants to be known as New York City's beer capital. Queens Beer Week kicked off on Friday to celebrate the borough's crafty breweries and the more than 60 venues that serve their beer. Dan Bronson of Crescent and Vine in Astoria is the bearded brains behind the inaugural Queens Beer Week. He organized it all. The nine-day celebration of beers brewed in Queens.
    Queens wants to be known as New York City's beer capital. Queens Beer Week kicked off on Friday to celebrate the borough's crafty breweries and the more than 60 venues that serve their beer. Dan Bronson of Crescent and Vine in Astoria is the bearded brains behind the inaugural Queens Beer Week. He organized it all. The nine-day celebration of beers brewed in Queens.
  • Woman wanted for baby snatch attempt in custody

    Woman wanted for baby snatch attempt in custody

    Friday, April 18 2014 9:57 PM EDT2014-04-19 01:57:17 GMT
    Police have taken into custody the woman believed to have tried to push a stroller with a baby inside away from a nanny in Chelsea. Tara Anne McDonald, 46, was being evaluated at a hospital Friday night. The attempted kidnapping occurred on 8th Ave. and 17th St. at about 3:45 p.m. on Thursday, police said.
    Police have taken into custody the woman believed to have tried to push a stroller with a baby inside away from a nanny in Chelsea. Tara Anne McDonald, 46, was being evaluated at a hospital Friday night. The attempted kidnapping occurred on 8th Ave. and 17th St. at about 3:45 p.m. on Thursday, police said.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices