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Officials Push Missile Shields For Commercial Jets

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U.S. Navy
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Two New York legislators are urging the government to study whether American passenger jets should be equipped with devices protecting them against missiles like the one that brought down a Malaysian airliner over Ukraine.

U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer and Congressman Steve Israel are asking the Department of Homeland Security, Defense Department and Federal Aviation Administration to consider technologies that would shield commercial aircraft.

The Democratic lawmakers say government study should include specific recommendations on the best technology needed to combat both shoulder-fired and surface-to-air missiles. Anti-missile devices including onboard lasers, warning systems, flares and infrared countermeasure systems, would likely cost from $1 to $2 million per plane.   Israel, to put the numbers in perspective,  notes the cost of an inflight entertainment system is $1 million per plane.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press

Dave Lucas is WAMC’s Capital Region Bureau Chief. Born and raised in Albany, he’s been involved in nearly every aspect of local radio since 1981. Before joining WAMC, Dave was a reporter and anchor at WGY in Schenectady. Prior to that he hosted talk shows on WYJB and WROW, including the 1999 series of overnight radio broadcasts tracking the JonBenet Ramsey murder case with a cast of callers and characters from all over the world via the internet. In 2012, Dave received a Communicator Award of Distinction for his WAMC news story "Fail: The NYS Flood Panel," which explores whether the damage from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee could have been prevented or at least curbed. Dave began his radio career as a “morning personality” at WABY in Albany.
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