MARLTON, N.J., April 22, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- After numerous attempts to speak with Representative Bill Shuster (R-PA), Melodie Homer, whose husband LeRoy died when United Airlines #93 was hijacked on September 11, 2001, crashing into western PA, has released the following:
Dear Congressman Shuster;
I am writing this letter to you regarding HR 1775 Saracini Aviation Safety Act 2013. I am asking you to release this bill from the Transportation and Infrastructure committee and allow it to be voted on immediately. As the head of the T & I committee, you are the only one who has the power to do so.
HR 1775 was introduced in an effort to further prevent and deter any attempts at gaining access to the cockpit. It calls for secondary barriers to be used during times in flight that the cockpit door needs to be opened for crew restroom breaks and meals.
A secondary barrier is a lightweight gate that can be locked into place when the cockpit door needs to be opened. The current procedure in place on many domestic airlines to protect the cockpit is to have a flight attendant with a food cart block access. In a recent video simulation using this method, individuals were able to gain access to the cockpit in under 2 seconds. This is not acceptable.
Since this bill was introduced last April 2013, 57 bipartisan co-sponsors have signed on. The Airline Pilots Association(ALPA), Allied Pilots Association, Coalition of Airline Pilots Association, Association of Flight Attendants, Federal Flight Deck Officers Association and the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association have all endorsed this bill. Most recently at the "Securing the Skies: Aviation Security a Dozen Years after 9/11" conference, ALPA's president Lee Moak emphasized "the need to install secondary cockpit barriers on all airliners".
In 2001, Flight #93 crashed in your district. You saw the devastation and suffering of our families first hand. This country vowed never again. Never again would we allow airplanes to be used as weapons of mass destruction. America 4 Airlines (A4A), a group which includes most major airlines, and is also one of your largest campaign contributors, maintain they advocate measures to support aviation safety. Each secondary barrier would cost approximately $3,500 per airliner and increase safety by up to 5%.
I respectfully ask you to release HR 1775 in the House of Representatives for an immediate vote. Do you stand for passenger safety?
SOURCE LeRoy W. Homer Jr. Foundation