Aviation News

June 18, 2012

FAA Discovers Most JFK Airport First Responders Not Certified

A Port Authority fire truck in action. (Photo by Matt Molnar)

An FAA audit of the nearly 200 first responders employed at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport revealed that an “overwhelming majority” were not certified for their positions, according to a DNAinfo.com report.

To prevent the FAA from shutting down the airport, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which runs the airport along with LaGuardia and Newark, has since been forced to not only stop using the uncertified officers, but to fill their roles by forcing the few remaining certified responders to work overtime.

Port Authority’s Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting (ARFF) units are manned by police officers who are trained as firefighters. In addition to basic firefighter training, the FAA requires ARFF personnel to hold a National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1003 certification for aviation rescue operations.

DNAinfo’s sources say the airport was never understaffed, and the Port Authority says it expects to get all personnel certified or re-certified by next week.



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