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ALLIED PILOTS ASSOCIATION URGES ADOPTION OF SECONDARY COCKPIT BARRIERS: "NEVER AGAIN"

FORT WORTH, Texas (March 14, 2016) — The Allied Pilots Association, certified collective bargaining agent for the 15,000 pilots of American Airlines, expressed  strong support for legislation that would require secondary cockpit barriers for larger commercial airliners.

The bill — H.R.911 in the House and S.911 in the Senate — would mandate secondary cockpit barriers for Part 121 commercial aircraft equipped with more than 75 passenger seats with a maximum gross takeoff weight exceeding 75,000 pounds.

"Secondary cockpit barriers would enhance aviation security, and we urge Congress to require their adoption," said APA President Capt. Keith Wilson. "After the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, our nation's professional pilots vowed 'never again.' As the last line of defense against another such attack, we committed ourselves to doing all we could to strengthen security for crewmembers and passengers. This amendment represents another significant step in that ongoing process."

The House and Senate versions of the bill are titled "The Saracini Aviation Safety Act of 2015." United Airlines Capt. Victor Saracini was pilot-in-command of United Airlines Flight 175, which the terrorists commandeered and flew into the South Tower of the World Trade Center. H.R.911 is part of the pending House Aviation Innovation, Reform, and Reauthorization Act, with efforts underway to include S.911 in the Senate Commerce Committee bill for FAA reauthorization.

"We want to express our appreciation to Representative Michael Fitzpatrick and Senator Robert Casey for sponsoring the bill and to Senator Edward Markey for offering the amendment in committee. We look forward to prompt approval of this important legislation," Wilson said.

Founded in 1963, the Allied Pilots Association — the largest independent pilots union in the United States — is headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas. APA represents the 15,000 pilots of American Airlines, including several hundred pilots on full-time military leave of absence serving in the armed forces. The union's website is www.alliedpilots.org. American Airlines is the world's largest passenger airline.

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