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Flights Safe – Aviation Security Service

MEDIA RELEASE Monday, September 17, 2001

From the New Zealand Aviation Security Service

Flights Safe – Aviation Security Service

The Aviation Security Service is confident that flights into and out of New Zealand and throughout the country are safe.

“We have been working hard since the tragic incidents in the United States last week, to ensure that all travellers reach their destination safely,” General Manager Mark Everitt said today. “That has meant increased security at airports and some disruption for passengers.

“However, almost all domestic flights are leaving on time and the public has been very co-operative.”

Mr Everitt said reports today of passengers breaching security measures were emotive and unhelpful.

“We are using discretion in what we allow on aircraft and must decide what constitutes a danger. We do not wish to impose harsh measures on ordinary passengers who are simply wanting to get to their destination quickly and safely.”

He said he would expect anyone who was carrying anything considered dangerous to declare it to his staff, who would then decide whether the item could be carried on the plane, placed in the cargo hold or confiscated.

“Almost everyone coming through the airports has been tolerant and understanding of the job we have to do at this difficult time,” Mr Everitt said.

The Aviation Security Service was working with airport companies and airlines to ensure that new security measures caused as little disruption as possible to travel.

“We need to be mindful of the huge cost involved in any flight delays and, of course, we need to consider the level of inconvenience to travellers. This always has to be weighed up against our primary concern – safety,” Mr Everitt said.

ENDS

For more information, please contact:

Mark Everitt

General Manager

Aviation Security Service

Ph: (04) 495-2430


Aviation Security Service, Box 2165, Wellington


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