Gerardo Hernandez Security Act signed into law

Under the newly signed Gerardo Hernandez Airport Security law, airports nationwide must install enhanced security and communication systems, in addition to taking other steps meant to eliminate various security threats.

“I’m proud to announce that the president has signed into law this important, bipartisan legislation to mitigate threats at our nation’s airports,” House Homeland Security Committee’s Transportation Security subcommittee Chairman John Katko (R-NY), who authored the law, said. “Named in honor of the TSA agent who tragically lost his life in the November 2013 shooting at Los Angeles International Airport, this measure will allow for better coordination by our state, local and federal law enforcement in responding to and assessing threats.”

In addition to improving communication systems at the nation’s airports, the U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) must also verify that all airports and high-risk surface transportation hubs have an appropriate security response plan in place to effectively train for and respond to security incidents when they occur. The law also requires that emergency communications equipment be regularly tested so that emergency first-responders are able to communicate with each other and the public during a security incident.

“While there is still much to be done to enhance security measures at airports nationwide, increasing preparedness requirements will go a long way in helping to ensure that the traveling public is kept safe,” Katko said. “Coordination by local law enforcement, emergency first responders, and TSA is the first step toward helping our nation’s transportation systems overcome the challenges experienced during the LAX shooting.”