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TSA Is Now Training Parking Attendants

From an approving Associated Press:

Parking attendants trained to watch for terrorists


May 14, 2010

LAS VEGAS — Parking attendants and meter maids could be the nation’s latest line of defense against terrorist attacks.

A new government program aims to train thousands of parking industry employees nationwide to watch for and report anything suspicious — abandoned cars, for example, or people hanging around garages, taking photographs or asking unusual questions.

Are they unionized? Also, exactly how much training is actually required for this precaution?

Moreover, why can’t you just tell them: “watch for and report anything suspicious — abandoned cars, for example, or people hanging around garages, taking photographs or asking unusual questions”?

Shouldn’t that be sufficient? Or would that not expand the government enough?

Organizers say parking attendants and enforcement officers are as important to thwarting attacks as the two Times Square street vendors who alerted police to a smoking SUV that was found to contain a gasoline-and-propane bomb.

“We can no longer afford as a nation to say, ‘It doesn’t impact me or my family, so therefore I’m not getting involved,’” Bill Arrington of the Transportation Security Administration told parking industry professionals at a convention this week in Las Vegas. “We’re saying, ‘Please, sir, get involved.’”

Now we understand. The TSA wants to expand.

The program has been in the works for about a year and gave its first presentation at the convention, attended by hundreds of people who run parking operations for cities, universities, stadiums and other places around the country.

Funded by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and administered by TSA, the program teaches parking lot operators to watch for odd activities that could precede an attack by days or months: strange odors such as diesel from gasoline vehicles, cars parked where they shouldn’t be, people who seem to be conducting surveillance by taking photos or drawing sketches

Again, how much ‘training’ does this require?

Many parking lot managers across the nation are already keenly aware of the threat and train their employees on what to watch for.

In New York, Jose Vega, manager of a Central Parking System garage near Times Square, said the police come by once a year to brief the employees.

“They tell us to look for abandoned cars,” Vega said…

So why do we need a federal program?

This article was posted by Steve on Saturday, May 15th, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

4 Responses to “TSA Is Now Training Parking Attendants”

  1. proreason says:

    They have to be trained to identify grannies.

  2. BobonStatenIsland says:

    Abandoned cars? Where? In the lot itself? Aren’t those cars considered “Parked” and racking up fees? Or are they talking about cars parked on the street? In that case, shouldn’t every door man and shop owner be trained? Aren’t abandoned cars ticketed? I would suspect the car with seven tickets on it is abandoned.

  3. Right of the People says:

    A task as complex as this (sarc) would probably mean at least a 12 – 20 hour training course for your typical TSA worker. They weren’t minimum wage earners before the creation of the TSA for nothing.

  4. bobdog says:

    Perhaps if they set up a terrorist rat line on the TSA’s website for parking lot attendants to report suspect behavior…

    I wonder what the TSA has budgeted for this ground-breaking training program? Since it’s a federal program, I’m reasonably certain that it ends with “…billlion”.

    Call me dubious.

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