Congressman Bennie Thompson on airline security - - Jackson, MS

Congressman Bennie Thompson on airline security

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By David Kenney - bio | email

JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - Security has been increased at airports around the world after a suspected terrorist tried to blow up an airliner, headed for the U.S. on Christmas day.

Mississippi Congressman Bennie Thompson will be leading the charge in Washington to create laws to increase security for airports.

Congressman Thompson, who is also the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee says this latest attempt to blow up a Delta airliner, will be used as the framework on how to improve airport security, and protect passengers in the air.

Bennie Thompson says, "This young man somehow got through the system, he should not under normal circumstances been allowed to fly."

House Homeland Security Chair, Congressman Bennie Thompson says, the first report from an investigation into how a Nigerian smuggled explosives onto a plane headed for the U.S., is now complete.

It contains information that will detail where the security was breached, which will be used as a model on how to improve safety for air passengers.

Thompson says, "We'll have some hearings around it to look at exactly what happened to see what has been done to make sure it doesn't happen again."

Since the bombing attempt, several airports have beefed up security checkpoints. Some are now using full body screening, which can detect foreign substances on airline passengers, even with their clothes on.

"There's some other technology being tested but for where we are right now it's the best thing on the market, we will bring some additional machines, we have 450 airports in the U.S. alone, those machines cost $200,000 a piece," says Thompson.

Government officials are also looking at using behavioral recognition, which would alert officials if someone was plotting a terrorist attack, by scanning their brain waves when they enter the airport.

Congressman Thompson says domestically airline security is air tight, it's overseas where this latest security beach occurred. U.S. officials are now working to coordinate security levels globally.

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