TSA 100% Screening Requirements in Effect
On June 30 2021, the TSA’s new 100% screening requirements took effect. These regulations require all-cargo aircraft flights to go through the same security screening procedure as passenger flights. It will fall on the cargo airlines and certified screening facilities to implement effective screening practices to maintain the efficiency of processing cargo. For those entities impacted: shippers, forwarders, handling agents and carriers there is little time remaining to prepare for what these changes will mean to the air cargo industry as a whole. These regulations will put a strain on cargo airlines since security will be more thorough, resulting in pushing back cut-off times to maintain a functional flow of cargo as well as higher charges for security fees. 100% screened cargo was one of the earliest objectives of the TSA, but after assessing the state of the industry and its ability to implement such a drastic change they knew it would take time. Airlines and certified screening facilities have spent months preparing for the shift to mitigate a backlog of cargo waiting to be screened. In addition, to the screening of all cargo there was also a change in the different screening methods that can be used. With a change in standards airlines and certified screening facilities have looked to large apparatus X-ray machines as a way of screening larger volumes of cargo faster as well as bomb sniffing dogs. These methods are likely the major ways cargo will be screened to keep security standards high while ensuring a swift screening process as to not disrupt the supply chain. With airlines implementing new costs their customers have begun to seek out their own ways of dealing with the change via certified screening facilities, these facilities have been approved by the TSA to screen cargo using approved methods for tender to the airlines. Pre-screened cargo gets to “cut the line” since it doesn’t need to go through the security process again, making it easier on the airlines. While it may be a few weeks till we see the true externalities of this change in security protocol we have already seen some effects with a wave of airlines pushing back their cutoff times or sending out notification of a new screening charge.