Cameras to monitor parking, terminals at airport



The airport already has a small system, but this will be the first time Broward County would add cameras to its parking garages and remote parking lots. The cameras are designed to monitor public places where it is difficult to have live security, said Airport Director Tom Jargiello.

Inside the terminal, the airport is working with the Transportation Security Administration.

Airport officials won't disclose the planned camera locations within the terminals. But many will record passengers as they pass through public areas. They also will monitor employees in parts of the airport inaccessible to the public.

''I think clearly this is the trend among airports; they're involved in technology enhancements,'' Jargiello said. ``Some of them are farther along. We're not necessarily ahead of the curve, and we're not necessarily behind the curve.''

Cameras already monitor the airfield itself and the entry roads to the airport. The system caught on camera an Aug. 22 train derailment on the tracks just east of the airport.

The four-phase project will expand on those existing cameras, at a cost of more than $4.5 million. The money will come from passenger facility charges already added to the cost of each ticket.

Miami International Airport has long used closed-circuit television, even before 9/11, said spokesman Marc Henderson. He would not disclose the location of the cameras, but said they are used for both security and general safety. ''You may or not be under surveillance by a camera, but you're probably being noticed by somebody,'' Henderson said.

The trend at MIA is to move toward what's known as ''behavioral pattern recognition,'' which Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff described to USA Today as ``looking at ways people behave that will actually suggest they're trying to hide something.''

Each MIA employee will be trained to recognize suspicious behavior, Henderson said.

''Cameras help, but we're now training all 35,000 employees in behavioral pattern recognition, which is a vitally more useful tool,'' he said.

Some Broward sheriff's deputies have had such training, said Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood spokesman Greg Meyer. More will be trained in the next six months. Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood faces $100,000 in federal fines for failing to correct numerous security lapses that were first noticed by the Transportation Security Administration during a November 2005 audit. The airport is fighting the fines.

Jargiello said the camera improvements are not mandates from the TSA, which approves the airport's security plan. The cameras would merely supplement the requirements of the security plan, Jargiello said.

The TSA is responsible for screening luggage and passengers, and the airport is responsible for securing the rest of the airfield and for controlling access to secure areas through fencing and identification cards.

Broward County commissioners will appoint a purchasing committee today to pick a company that will install the third phase of the project, which puts cameras in garages and terminals.

They've already approved seeking bids for the fourth phase of the project, the final and most expensive part of the camera program, which is unrelated to security.

That program, set to debut in about 18 months, uses cameras to help direct planes on the airfield in areas where air traffic controllers with the Federal Aviation Administration do not monitor them.


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