Congressmen Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-08) and Josh Gottheimer (NJ-05) joined in the following statement after the President signed the Saracini Aviation Safety Act of 2018 into law:
Last Friday, the President signed a bipartisan FAA reauthorization measure that protects passengers, pilots, and flight attendants by mandating installation of secondary barriers on all new commercial aircraft. Due to the tireless work of Ellen Saracni, Congressman Josh Gottheimer, and Sen. Pat Toomey, The Saracini Safety Aviation Act is finally law,” said Fitzpatrick.
The measure has been in the works for a few years. Its earliest proponents sought to prevent aircraft from being hijacked again, with the vital addition of secondary barriers.
The legislation is named in honor of pilot Captain Victor J. Saracini, who was killed when terrorists hijacked United Flight 175 on Sept. 11, 2001. Saracini’s widow, Ellen, has been a leading advocate on the issue since her husband’s death.
“It is my mission to work with Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick to ensure we are doing everything we can to negate the known vulnerability on the flight deck aboard our nation’s airliners,” Ellen Saracini said. “Without secondary barriers, we are just as vulnerable today as we were on that fateful day.”
A provision in the FAA Reauthorization Act requires the installation of secondary barriers on new passenger aircraft. These inexpensive, light weight wire-mesh gates would be installed between the passenger cabin and the cockpit door to block access to the flight deck whenever the cockpit door is opened during flight for pilots’ meals, restroom use, and other reasons.