on April 30, 2002
Dan McKinnon is a former Chairman of the Civil Aeronautics Board and Navy rescue pilot, current CEO of one of our smaller airlines (North American Airlines), so he has some credibility on this topic. He is trying to keep the advice concise, yet deal with a field that is full of myths and misconceptions- and is subject to continual change, not to mention design by political expedience. But if people are concerned and not flying, or fearful and feeling in the dark, this book can help them understand what is being done about travel safety, and what each of us can do to increase self-protection while traveling.
Areas covered include what is being done by government, airport authorities and airlines to increase security; what individual travelers can do to reduce exposure and manage risk while traveling (or while visiting or living in a foreign location); what to do if the unthinkable happens and you are present during a hijack attempt, or taken hostage. He also attempts to address some of the current hot topics in security planning, such as whether pilots should be authorized to carry firearms.
Frequent travelers, those who are concerned about international travel and those who will travel to areas that carry heightened exposure to terrorism may find this book useful- but some of the tips also apply to reducing one's profile to thieves and scam artists as well, though that purpose is not overtly the topic of the book.
Some caveats: this book opts for succinctness, rather than lengthy explanations and references, and it deals with current air travel security practice- which could change in some of its aspects at any time. It also occasionally doles out what could be termed brutal honesty- not everyone's cup of tea, even if the probabilities are low that one will be subject to a hijack or hostage-taking situation. But as one who flies over 75,000 miles domestically and overseas every year- and who hasn't even slowed down since 9-11- I think this is a good book for those who are concerned about post-September 11 air travel, as well as those travelers who are not experienced and want to know how they can manage some of their potential risk.