Pilot in Hot Water for Exposing Security Flaws

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An anonymous 50-year-old airline pilot is in hot water with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) after posting on YouTube a behind-the-scenes tour of what he says are security flaws at San Francisco International Airport.

While airplane passengers go through security screening -- such as with metal detectors, full body scanners and pat downs -- the pilot shows in one of several video clips, recorded with his cell phone, that airport employees at SFO simply swipe a card to go through an unmanned door.

"Well, folks, I just wanted to give you an idea of what type of security for the ground personnel there is. This is their screening. As you can see, there's only a card slide and one door," the pilot says in the video. "And right here's a sign, 'Think security.' Well, I don't think there's much security here."

The pilot, who has been flying for an airline for more than a decade, alerted Sacramento's KXTV when he posted the videos saying he wanted the information to be made public.



According to sister station ABC7 in San Francisco, the disclosure resulted in federal air marshals and sheriff's deputies showing up at the pilot's home -- an event the pilot, a deputized federal air marshal, also recorded -- to confiscate his federally issued handgun.

Attorney Don Werno, who represents the pilot, says he believes the TSA was sending a message that "you've angered us by telling the truth and by showing America that there are major security problems despite the fact that we've spent billions of dollars allegedly to improve airline safety."

A TSA spokesman tells ABC7 he's unaware of the incident, but if the pilot had concerns he should have brought them to the TSA.

Meanwhile, ABC7's aviation consultant, Ron Wilson, who worked at SFO for 47 years, says what the pilot says is true, and that the hole in security has bothered him ever since the 9/11 attacks.

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