Former U.S. Secretary of Transportation Mineta Discusses September 11 Response

Sep 08, 2011, 12:11 ET from Texas Department of Transportation

Reflects on unprecedented decision to ground aircraft nationwide on TxDOT podcast

AUSTIN, Texas, Sept. 8, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- On September 11, 2001, then-U.S. Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta faced one of the toughest decisions of his career -- ordering the grounding of all domestic air traffic for the first time in United States history following deadly attacks on New York City and Washington, D.C.

On a special edition of the TxDOT Podcast commemorating the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks, Secretary Mineta reflects on his actions to make air travel more secure. The episode is scheduled to post at noon CDT on Thursday, September 8.

In the days that followed, as investigations looked back, Secretary Mineta was charged with looking forward and improving security for the nation's transportation infrastructure. Mineta, now global vice chairman for Hill and Knowlton in Washington, D.C., also talks about the legacy the September 11 attacks left on United States transportation in the interview.

Mineta served as Secretary of Transportation during part of President Bill Clinton's second term and both of President George W. Bush's terms. He's the longest-serving Secretary of Transportation since the cabinet position was created in 1967.

Prior to his service as Secretary of Transportation, Mineta spent 20 years in Congress and served as mayor and city councilman for San Jose, California. As a Congressman, he chaired what is now the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and was a key author of the landmark Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991, the first significant federal surface transportation legislation in the post-interstate highway system era.

TxDOT's free podcasts are produced weekly and address a variety of transportation issues by talking with industry experts and business leaders. In the last four years, TxDOT has posted more than 100 transportation-related podcasts including interviews with Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood, former Speaker of the House Dick Gebhardt and energy tycoon T. Boone Pickens.

All podcasts are available for download on TxDOT's website ( and on iTunes. New episodes (with the exception of this week's special edition podcast) are posted each Friday at noon.

For more information call TxDOT's Government & Public Affairs Division at (512) 463-8700.

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SOURCE Texas Department of Transportation