Chapter 5 - Security

Chapter 5 - Security


As the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, made clear, the nation's economic well-being and security are dependent on a transportation system that can move people, goods, and military personnel and equipment without fear of disruption or damage. The hijacking of four U.S. aircraft and their unprecedented use as weapons resulted in an extraordinary total shutdown of the nation's air transportation and put a severe strain on the balance of the system.

Transportation systems, both overseas and in the United States, have long attracted terrorists and criminals, particularly because these systems are accessible, attract broad media coverage when attacked, and disruptions may affect a large number of people. The September 2001 attacks however, came after a 10-year lull in U.S. hijackings, although terrorist and criminal attacks aimed at transportation worldwide have been increasing in the last five years.

Securing all transportation modes, facilities, and the people who use them is a vast undertaking. Most of the national focus since September 2001 has been on aircraft and airports. However, attention is also being directed at all other modes. The United States has 25 major seaports, receiving about 140 seagoing ships a day loaded with bulk or containerized cargo. Cruise ships call at dozens of U.S. ports. Rail freight carriers have over 150,000 miles of track and more than 20,000 locomotives, plus dispatching centers, yards, bridges, and tunnels to defend against terrorism. In addition, Amtrak serves about 61,000 passengers daily using 515 stations in 46 states. With about 90 percent of hazardous materials shipments taking place along the nation's highways, improving enroute security of this particular cargo is also now a priority.

Protecting the nation's borders from illegal drugs, contraband, and aliens is yet another example of how transportation and national security are inextricably linked. The increasing flow of international trade and passenger travel means that more cars, trucks, and railcars are crossing U.S. borders and more ships are arriving at U.S. ports, thus enhancing opportunities for illegal activities. The U.S. Coast Guard seized a record 132,480 pounds of cocaine with an estimated import value of $4.4 billion in fiscal year 2000, while also confiscating over 50,000 pounds of marijuana. Immediately after September 11, the Coast Guard repositioned many of its resources to protect U.S. ports and coasts.

Finally, our national security is dependent on key transportation-related industries: shipbuilding, aircraft manufacturing, and energy production. The armed forces' reliance on ships and aircraft makes the maintenance of a strong manufacturing base in these industries a vital concern. The U.S. shipbuilding industry has experienced a long-term decline, with just over 1 percent of total world gross tonnage of worldwide shipbuilding orders in mid-2001. In contrast, U.S. production of large transport aircraft has increased since the mid-1990s, albeit the industry experienced a sharp decline in orders after September 2001. Petroleum supplies 97 percent of the U.S. transportation system's energy needs. Since 1997, however, the United States has imported more than half the oil that it consumes, making transportation vulnerable to international disruptions in supply.

Terrorist Threats to Transportation

The terrorist attacks of September 2001 transformed the threat environment under which the United States operates. The security of the transportation system was particularly called into question when four U.S. airliners were hijacked during domestic flights and crashed-two into the World Trade Center, one into the Pentagon, and one in rural Pennsylvania. Although the exact number of casualties from the attack may never be known, all 265 people aboard the aircraft and 125 people on the ground at the Pentagon died, and an estimated 2,645 people in the World Trade Center were killed (see box). Since the attacks, the nation has worked to enhance the security of aviation and all other transportation modes, including maritime, transit, highway, and pipeline.

In an unprecedented event, the entire civilian air transportation system was shut down within hours of the September 11th attacks. The commercial aviation portion of the system resumed partial operation within two days, after the airlines instituted emergency security measures, as directed by the Federal Aviation Administration. The Administration and U.S. Congress moved within months to comprehensively shore up vulnerabilities throughout the transportation system by enacting the Aviation and Transportation Security Act of 2001.

The new law makes substantial changes to aviation security-intensifying the screening of passengers, baggage, and cargo-and places responsibility largely at the federal level. To oversee and improve the security of all transportation modes, the Act also established a new agency, the Transportation Security Administration within the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) [3]. The Administration subsequently proposed moving the agency, along with DOT's U.S. Coast Guard, to the new Department of Homeland Security, signed into law on November 25, 2002.

Terrorism has long been an international security concern. The number of terrorist attacks worldwide has fluctuated over the past decade (figure 1). The number of attacks in 2000 was 25 percent below the 10-year high of 565 attacks in 1991. The number of casualties resulting from these attacks has also fluctuated, from a low of 344 people in 1991 to a high of 6,693 people in 1998 (table 1). Terrorism-related casualties were also relatively low in 1999 and 2000 because of the absence of any attacks involving large numbers of people [8, 9].

Attacks on U.S. interests have been rising since 1994. Two hundred incidents occurred during 2000, up over 300 percent from 1994. Attacks targeting U.S. interests rose from 20 percent to 47 percent of the total number of terrorist attacks worldwide during that period. This change was due primarily to an increase in the number of attacks on U.S. interests in other countries. More than three-quarters of the anti-U.S. terrorist incidents in 2000 were directed at the Cano Limon crude oil pipeline in Colombia [8, 9].

Worldwide, the number of domestic attacks1 on transportation systems grew dramatically between 1995 and 1998, the last year for which published data were available when this report was prepared, driving total violent acts against transportation up 107 percent (figure 2). Transportation infrastructure draws terrorists because it is accessible; attracts broad media coverage when attacked; may be associated with a national symbol, such as a country's airlines; and large numbers of people can be affected by a single act.

Although aviation is an attractive target, other transportation modes have been hit more often in the past (table 2). In 1998, attacks against buses accounted for the greatest number of deaths and injuries for a single mode: 1,676. Around the world, the highest percentage of attacks occurred on highways and maritime vessels and at facilities such as ports (table 3).

Within the United States, violent attacks on transportation have also increased, doubling between 1997 and 1998. Since September 2001, the use of aircraft and other vehicles to cause destruction and mass casualties has emerged as a major domestic terrorist threat. However, as with international trends, the U.S. airline industry has not been targeted as frequently as other modes of transportation. In fact, prior to September 2001, there had been no such hijacking incidents in nearly 10 years [10, 11].

While most of the national focus since September 2001 has been on aircraft and airports, securing the other modes has become all important. The United States has 25 major ports, receiving about 140 seagoing ships a day loaded with bulk or containerized cargo. Cruise ships call at dozens of U.S. ports. In 2000, more than 10 million Americans took cruises to over 200 ports around the world [4]. Rail freight carriers own over 150,000 miles of track and more than 20,000 locomotives, plus dispatching centers, yards, bridges, and tunnels [2]. Amtrak serves 515 stations in 46 states and has 378 locomotives and about 61,000 passengers who use its service daily [7].

Within the 29 communities in the country with rail transit systems, there are over 10,300 miles of track and 2,000 stations to protect [1]. These systems are not only vulnerable to attack but are also particularly useful in emergency situations. On September 11, emergency response crews and the public in New York City and Washington relied on subways, trains, buses, and ferries to evacuate the crash sites and assist victims. Subway train systems, however, with large numbers of passengers in enclosed spaces, may be especially prone to attacks by poisonous gas. The release of poisonous Sarin nerve gas in 1998 in a Tokyo subway killed 12 passengers [10]. Now, communities are seeking to integrate transit systems into emergency response plans and to shore up transit security. For instance, transit administrators in Washington, DC, expedited a pilot project placing airborne toxin sensors in underground subway stations following the September 2001 attacks. Late in 2001, Congress appropriated $45 million for the District of Columbia to expand the use of sensors and other safety equipment, develop a regionally integrated response plan to national security events, and cover security costs incurred during 2001 [5, 6].

1Domestic or indigenous terrorism involves groups or individuals that target their own government or people without foreign involvement. International terrorism involves the citizens or territory of more than one country.

1. American Public Transit Association, Transit Statistics: Fiscal Year 1999, available at, as of Jan. 18, 2002.
2. Association of American Railroads, Railroad Facts: 2001 Edition (Washington, DC: 2001).
3. Aviation and Transportation Security Act of 2001, Public Law 107-71, available at, as of Jan. 9, 2001.
4. Cross, L., "Seaport Security: Research, Equipment and Training Needs," paper presented to the Transportation Research Board, available at, as of Jan. 14, 2002.
5. Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2002, Public Law 107-117, available at, as of Jan. 9, 2001.
6. District of Columbia Appropriations Act of 2002, Public Law 107-96, 107th Congress, available at, as of Jan. 9, 2001.
7. National Railroad Passenger Corp., Annual Report 2000 (Washington, DC: 2000).
8. U.S. Department of State, Patterns of Global Terrorism (Washington, DC: Annual issues), also available at, as of Jan. 8, 2002.
9 _____. Personal communication, Jan. 18, 2002.
10. U.S. Department of Transportation, The Changing Face of Transportation (Washington, DC: 2000).
11. ______. Office of the Secretary of Transportation, Office of Intelligence and Security. Worldwide Terrorist and Violent Criminal Attacks Against Transportation-1998 (Washington, DC: 1999).

International Terrorism and Civil Aviation

The hijacking of four civilian aircraft on September 11, 2001, ended a 10-year lull in hijackings of U.S. carriers. They were also the first U.S. hijackings to result in massive fatalities (or loss of aircraft) and the first time civilian aircraft were successfully used as missiles. The terrorists hijacked two United Air Lines and two American Airlines planes, crashing two of them into the World Trade Center in New York City, one into the Pentagon in Washington, DC, and one in rural Pennsylvania. All 265 people on board died, 125 were killed on the ground at the Pentagon, and an estimated 2,645 people lost their lives in New York City (see box). Many others were seriously injured.

The number of air hijackings has varied each year since 1970 (figure 1). In 1970, there were 65 hijackings worldwide; in 1980 and 1990, there were 39 and 40, respectively. The number of hijackings fluctuated in the intervening years, generally staying below 30. Over the same 30-year period, the number of flights, enplanements, and passenger-miles flown by scheduled air carriers increased dramatically. While attacks against civil aviation worldwide claimed only 2 lives and wounded 27 other people in 2000, the toll was much higher in 2001 (see box). Hijackings and airport attacks accounted for nearly three-quarters of the overall incidents against civil aviation during the past five years (table 1). Only 2 percent of these were bombings.

Asia experienced the highest number of attacks on aviation between 1996 and 2000 (figure 2) and accounted for 45 percent of all incidents in 2000. Of the six hijackings that occurred in Asia, a domestic Afghan flight was rerouted to London, England, where several of the passengers and hijackers requested asylum. There was just one incident in North America during 2000.

The hijackings of September 2001 are the latest in the ongoing evolution in terrorist threats to aviation. For example, after the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) responded to a rash of hijackings in the 1970s by deploying metal detectors at domestic airports, terrorists began to board aircraft and leave explosive devices in the aircraft via carry-on baggage at various overseas locations. Similarly, after FAA began examining carry-on baggage, terrorists were successful in placing explosive devices on board aircraft via checked baggage without actually boarding the aircraft [1]. Now, terrorists have exploited a new area of vulnerability by adopting the tactic of suicide hijackings.

The bombing of Pan Am flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, in December 1988, stimulated some of the most significant changes in aviation security prior to September 2001. However, the most stringent security measures were on flights bound for or arriving from overseas destinations, because the vast majority of criminal and terrorist acts against civil aviation up until that time had taken place overseas.

1. U.S. General Accounting Office, Resources, Com..munity, and Economic Development Division, Aviation Security: Additional Actions Needed To Meet Domestic and International Challenges (Washington, DC: January 1994).

Maritime Security

The Port of New York and New Jersey was shut down immediately after the events of September 11, 2001. But the maritime community (e.g., ferry operators) substituted for much of the normal land-based transportation that was unavailable that day and transported more than 1 million people from south Manhattan [3]. Throughout the country, vessels arriving at U.S. ports were subjected to a U.S. Customs "Level 1 Alert" resulting in substantially increased vigilance by Customs officers during the processing of cargo, crews, and passengers entering the country [9].

As with air transportation security, maritime security is an international and domestic issue. It involves both preventing illegal alien migrants and drugs from entering the country and securing ports, waterways, and vessels from terrorist threats. Of the 1,033 terrorist and criminal attacks aimed at transportation systems worldwide in 1998,1 21 percent were directed at maritime ports and vessels [8]. Acts of piracy and armed robbery against ships worldwide increased 135 percent between 1998 and 2000 and then declined 34 percent in 2001 (figure 1).

Domestically, among 27 transportation attacks in 1998, 5 were maritime incidents [8]. One incident-an act of piracy against a ship in the Miami River-resulted in the drowning of 2 of the 13 pirates. Historically, one of the more infamous attacks occurred in the Mediterranean Sea in October 1983 when terrorists boarded an Italian cruise ship, the Achille Lauro. They killed an American tourist on board when their demands were not met but then surrendered. In 2000, Americans made up more than 82 percent of the passengers on all cruises worldwide [2].

U.S. waterborne trade, transportation, and the U.S. economy in general is dependent on the efficient flow of goods and people through U.S. ports and inland waterways. As of December 2001, there were 9,309 U.S. commercial waterway facilities2 (including more than 300 ports) that engage in U.S. foreign and domestic trade. Along the inland waterways, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers owns or operates 230 lock sites and 276 lock chambers [4]. U.S. ports received over 71,000 tanker, dry bulk, container, and other types of cargo vessels in 2000 (table 1). While most of the calls are concentrated in just 25 ports, all facilities have established some security measures.

Given the dispersed nature of the U.S. maritime transportation system, numerous federal, state, and local government entities and private industry share responsibilities for ensuring its security. At the federal level, the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) has the primary operational responsibility. In the immediate response to September 2001, USCG repositioned much of its manpower and equipment away from U.S. coastal waters for interdiction purposes to locations near port facilities to ensure the security of ports and terminals. This shift in priorities was accomplished, in part, by a call up of nearly 2,000 USCG reservists by early 2002 [6]. Among the near-term consequences of this shift, however, were a 25 percent reduction in drug interdiction and an even greater reduction in fisheries law enforcement [3].

Working with local officials, Coast Guard Captains of the Ports have been given the authority to adopt security measures to ensure the safety and security of the port to which they are assigned. For instance, USCG has established security zones in all U.S. ports and a Sea Marshal program at select ports to position armed USCG personnel aboard commercial deep draft vessels. By late January 2002, marshals had escorted over 1,000 vessels. To further protect vessels while transiting through U.S. ports, coastal zones, and inland waterways, USCG has set up 100-yard security zones around all U.S. Navy, USCG, and cruise ships [7]. Furthermore, USCG has been working with U.S. port authorities to develop or improve existing individual port security plans [5].

A longstanding rule has required vessels over 300 gross tons and all foreign vessels regardless of tonnage bound for U.S. ports to notify USCG at least 24 hours prior to arrival. Since October 4, 2001, vessels planning to enter U.S. ports must notify USCG 96 hours before arrival and provide information about all crewmembers and passengers on board [1]. In addition, certain vessels that had been exempt from the previous reporting requirements are subject to the new rules.

1When this report was prepared, the most recent year for which comprehensive data on terrorism directed at transportation were publicly available was 1998.

2Waterway facilities as counted by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are piers, wharves, and docks. Not included are those facilities used exclusively for recreational or active military craft and generally those providing nonmaritime use.

1. 66 Federal Register 193 (Oct. 4, 2001), "Temporary Requirements for Notification of Arrival in U.S. Ports," 50565-50574.
2. International Council of Cruise Lines, testimony of M. Michael Crye, President, before the Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and Consumer Protection of the U.S. House of Representatives, Committee on Energy and Commerce, Oct. 17, 2001.
3. Loy, J., U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Department of Transportation, "Spotlight on Security and Recovery," presented at the Transportation Research Board Annual Meetings, Washington, DC, Jan. 14, 2001.
4. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Navigation Data Center, The U.S. Waterway System-Transportation Facts (Alexandria, VA: December 2001).
5. U.S. Congress, House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation, Hearing on Port Security, Dec. 6, 2001, available at
6. U.S. Department of Defense, DefenseLINK, "National Guard and Reserve Mobilized as of Feb. 6," available at, as of Feb. 11, 2002.
7. U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. Coast Guard, "Homeland Security," available at, as of Feb. 12, 2002.
8. _____. Office of Intelligence and Security, Worldwide Terrorist and Violent Criminal Attacks Against Transportation: 1998 (Washington, DC: 1999).
9. U.S. Department of the Treasury, U.S. Customs Service, "Advisory on the Status of U.S. Ports of Entry on the Northern and Southern Borders," Status Advisory, Sept. 14, 2001, available at, as of Feb. 12, 2002.

Hazardous Materials Transportation Security

Essential to industrial production and our economic well-being, the transportation of hazardous materials is a necessary component of everyday life. Recognizing the necessity but also the risks associated with hazardous materials, the federal government has long had a role in regulating its transportation. As a result of the events of September 2001, the federal government has increased its focus on security, as well as safety, in its regulation and oversight role.

There are approximately 800,000 domestic hazardous materials shipments each day using all modes of transportation. The great majority (about 90 percent) of hazardous materials are transported on highways. These shipments are mostly petroleum products and flammable gases but also include explosives, poisons, corrosives, flammable materials, infectious substances, and radioactive materials. They are transported widely throughout the country on short, medium, and long hauls. En route security has emerged as a major concern among security officials. To address this, they have recommended that motor carriers select their routes taking security into account, limit stops, place locks on tanks, and obtain escorts for selected materials. In addition, security officials are encouraging the reporting of suspicious activity, enhancement of security around facilities, and security training for employees.

Since September 2001, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and other federal agencies have taken numerous, multifaceted steps to prevent and prepare for possible terrorist actions involving the transportation of hazardous materials. The USA Patriot Act (Public Law 107-56) enacted in late September 2001 requires that the Federal Bureau of Investigation conduct background checks of carriers and drivers of hazardous materials (see box). DOT is encouraging better coordination among carriers, shippers, and consignees of hazardous materials to ensure tighter control of shipments. The department is also investigating technological options that could increase security by, for example, providing real-time tracking and improved intelligence gathering and sharing.

The DOT technology reviews are being done, in part, to better understand how to balance information needs of emergency responders with security concerns. DOT is also evaluating, from a security perspective, the prioritization and segmentation of the risks associated with hazardous materials transportation (by class, material, and quantity). DOT's Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has been making security sensitivity visits to motor carriers transporting hazardous materials to review their policies, procedures, and personnel. Over 24,000 visits have resulted in about 100 referrals to appropriate law enforcement agencies for further investigation.

Movement of Military Forces and Equipment

Our nation's civilian transportation infrastructure provides vital strategic mobility for equipment and forces in times of national emergency. Since the end of the Cold War, U.S. armed forces have shifted from anticipating a possible global conflict with a dangerous and powerful adversary to being prepared for rapid deployment in localized incidents. At the same time, fewer U.S. troops are permanently stationed in foreign countries. This smaller, more mobile, U.S. military force structure places different demands on our transportation system [2].

Within several months of September 2001, over 70,000 National Guard and Reservists were mobilized to provide domestic support and to serve in Operation Enduring Freedom (figure 1). These troops are about 30 percent of the total number of National Guard and Reservists mobilized during the 1991 Gulf War. In contrast to the Gulf War, however, many more of the 2001/2002 activated National Guard and Reservists were deployed to locations in the United States to participate in Operation Noble Eagle.

The ability of the United States to respond to military emergencies requires adequate U.S.-controlled maritime shipping capacity to move equipment, fuel, supplies, and ammunition [4]. The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) relies on commercial transportation providers for a large percentage of its peacetime freight and personnel movements, as well as wartime movements. A major portion of this commercial transportation capacity includes the use of U.S.-flagged vessels and the U.S. merchant marine under the Maritime Administration's Maritime Security Program (MSP). The MSP was established to help ensure the existence of and access to as many as 47 modern and militarily useful U.S.-flagged oceangoing commercial vessels with U.S. crews for DOD sealift requirements [4].

The National Defense Reserve Fleet (NDRF), owned by the government, supports DOD during national emergencies and consists of U.S. vessels strategically docked throughout the United States. The NDRF, which included 2,000 vessels in 1960, had 316 ships in fiscal year 2001 (figure 2). The total capacity of the NDRF has also declined. However, it has not declined as quickly as the number of vessels. As older, smaller ships have been withdrawn from the NDRF, the individual ships that remain in service are larger on average. Furthermore, a greater emphasis has been placed on maintaining a fleet that can be deployed rapidly, rather than a large fleet. The NDRF was refocused due to various factors, including the end of the Cold War, budget priority shifts, greater reliance on commercial vessels, and increased airlift capabilities. The Ready Reserve Fleet (RRF), a subset of the NDRF, can be tendered to the Navy's Military Sea Command during armed conflicts and humanitarian emergencies in 4 to 30 days, depending on the location of vessels and their readiness [6]. The RRF had 76 ships in 2001, down from 90 the previous year due to the downgrade of 14 older, shallow-draft breakbulk1 vessels. Other RRF vessels have undergone deck expansion to adjust for the loss of cargo capacity [5]. Over 100,000 U.S. merchant mariners are qualified to serve on large ocean-going vessels. Approximately two-thirds of qualified mariners would be available for service aboard a U.S.-flagged vessel in a national defense emergency and, of these available mariners, most could serve for 90 days or more [3].

The Civil Reserve Air Fleet (CRAF) is another key component of the nation's security resources. Selected aircraft from commercial U.S. airlines are contracted to CRAF to support DOD airlift requirements when military aircraft needs exceed capabilities. The CRAF program provides incentives for civil carriers to commit their aircraft. In 2000, 31 carriers and 702 aircraft were enrolled in CRAF [1] (table 1). As of January 2002, CRAF had not been called on to aid Operation Enduring Freedom or Operation Noble Eagle due to a high level of voluntary participation in these operations [1].

Finally, the nation's rail and highway systems play critical roles in the movement of military equipment and personnel. When the need arises, vast amounts of military equipment and personnel are moved from continental U.S.-based military installations to various seaports and airports. Most of this equipment travels over U.S. highways [2].

The Strategic Highway Network (STRAHNET) system of public highways provides access, continuity, and emergency transportation of personnel and equipment in times of peace and war. The 61,000-mile system, designated by the Federal Highway Administration in partnership with DOD, comprises about 45,400 miles of Interstate and defense highways and 15,600 miles of other public highways. STRAHNET is complemented by about 1,700 miles of connectors-additional highway routes linking more than 200 military installations and ports to the network [2] (see map).

1A breakbulk vessel is a cargo vessel with the capacity to carry loose or noncontainerized goods.

1. U.S. Department of Defense, Air Force, United States Transportation Command, personal communication, Jan. 10, 2002.
2. U.S. Department of Transportation, The Changing Face of Transportation (Washington, DC: 2000), pp. 7-1-7-6.
3. U.S. Department of Transportation, Bureau of Transportation Statistics, 2001 Mariner Survey (Washington, DC: October 2001), pp. 7-9.
4. U.S. Department of Transportation, Maritime Administration, "Proceedings of the National Conference on the Marine Transportation System: Ports, Waterways, and Intermodal Connectors," November 1998.
5. ____. personal communication, Jan. 18, 2002.
6. ____. Office of Ship Operations, The National Defense Reserve Fleet, available at, as of June 28, 2000.

Alien Smuggling and Interdiction

People seeking to enter the U.S. illegally cross (or attempt to cross) U.S. borders using all transportation modes and on foot. The U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) is responsible for interdictions at sea (figure 1). The number of migrants stopped by USCG is small (3,948 in fiscal year 2001) compared with total Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) arrests (1.2 million people in fiscal year 2001).1 However, many USCG interdiction cases begin as search and rescue operations, often because migrants travel in overcrowded and unseaworthy vessels.

The number of USCG interdictions can vary greatly from year to year. In the peak year of 1994, over 98 percent of the 63,426 interdicted migrants were Haitians and Cubans. Migrants from these two countries and from the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, and the People's Republic of China (PRC) constitute the bulk of USCG interdictions each year. However, the number from any one country can vary by year. For instance, the number of migrant interdictions from the PRC declined to 64 people in 2001 from a high of 1,351 in 1999. In past years, illegal PRC migrants have used Guam as a stopping point to gain entrance into the United States. Migrant flow has shifted away from Guam, largely in response to USCG interdiction efforts. Many Chinese migrants now seek to transit through Mexico and Central America for eventual passage across the United States land border [2].

Cuban interdiction operations differ from those of other countries. Under the 1966 Cuban Adjustment Act (Public Law 89-732), Cuban migrants who reach U.S. shores can stay in the United States and obtain permanent residency status within one year. If captured at sea, they are returned to Cuba or taken to a safe haven [2]. Many Cubans are transported in regular high-speed boats that blend into normal boating traffic. Near the U.S. shore, migrants are transferred to small rafts that are difficult to interdict. USCG interdicted nearly 47 percent fewer illegal Cuban migrants in 2001 compared with 1999. There are several reasons, including improved efficiency in granting immigrant visas by the U.S. Interest Section in Havana, more Cubans taking illegal flights to the United States from third countries, and more Cubans traveling to Mexico by air and then crossing the land border illegally [2].

Although total interdictions have stayed between 4,000 and 4,500 the last four years, USCG expects illegal migrant activity by sea to rise. Of the 4,136 interdictions in 2001, 72 percent were Haitians and Ecuadorians (figure 2).

Professional criminals vie for a share of the $10 billion a year migrant smuggling activity [1]. For example, as much as $6 million may be paid by a large boatload of migrants from the PRC to be smuggled into the United States. PRC migrants pay smugglers up to $40,000 each, and Cuban migrants pay up to $8,000 each [2].

1Most migrants caught by USCG are returned to their country of origin and, thus, not turned over to INS. In fiscal year 2001, for instance, 74 percent of Dominican Republic, 97 percent of Cuban, and 99 percent of Haitian migrants were returned. Each year, however, all migrants from the People's Republic of China are turned over to INS.

1. Office of Naval Intelligence and U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. Coast Guard, Threats and Challenges to Maritime Security (Washington, DC: March 1999).
2. U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. Coast Guard, The 2000 Annual Report of the U.S. Coast Guard (Washington, DC: 2001).

Drug Smuggling and Interdiction

An estimated 6.7 percent of Americans 12 years of age and older (14 million people) were illicit drug users in 1999. To address this problem, the United States spent $18 billion on drug control programs in fiscal year (FY) 2001. Of the total, the United States earmarked $2.6 billion for drug interdiction operations (figure 1) [1]. Since September 2001, the lead interdiction agencies-the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) and the U.S. Customs Service (Customs)-have had to give greater attention to port and border security.

In the last decade, both agencies have been facing growing challenges in their efforts to interdict illegal drugs. The increasing flow of trade and passenger travel means that more cars, trucks, and railcars are crossing U.S. borders and more ships are arriving at U.S. ports from all over the world. Moreover, the growth in the use of containers to ship commodities has facilitated cargo transfers and increased intermodal transportation services, thus allowing an easier worldwide flow of goods from road to rail to sea. With increasing traffic and the flow of goods comes increasing opportunity to smuggle illegal drugs [2].

Competition among U.S. ports has encouraged efficiency over security in the past. Of the 17 million containers arriving at maritime ports annually, Customs has closely inspected only 2 percent. Customs has established a forum on commercial shipping security with foreign manufacturers, exporters, carriers, importers, and other industry sectors in the wake of the terrorist attacks. In order to avoid delays that may result from heightened security, Customs intends to expedite the inspection process for active and approved participants in the forum [7].

Customs has intercepted a growing volume of illegal drugs along the nation's borders. In FY 2001, officials seized 308,635 pounds of heroin, cocaine, and marijuana, up 319 percent from FY 1995 [8]. Customs officials expect that increased inspection of all arriving cars, trucks, and individuals-due to the level one alert status maintained since September 2001-may result in a higher drug seizure rate during FY 2002, particularly in Texas and New Mexico [6]. From October through December 2001, Customs seized nearly 86,603 pounds of heroin, cocaine, and marijuana, up almost 81 percent from the same period in 2000 [8].

The Coast Guard has also conducted more intensive antiterrorism operations at the nation's ports since the terrorist attacks. Not only has USCG committed more personnel, ships, and resources to protecting the nation's ports and coastline, but it now scrutinizes ship passengers and crew more thoroughly. Whereas ships were required to provide the Coast Guard a 24-hour advance notice of arrival when traveling from a foreign port, now they must provide a 96-hour advance notice of arrival, along with a ship manifest and list of persons aboard [3].

Although the heightened state of security may divert resources away from traditional drug interdiction efforts, intensified scrutiny of maritime traffic may also aid interdiction. Data for 2001/2002 are not available to show this effect, but the Coast Guard has seized growing quantities of illegal drugs since 1998 (figure 2). Most recently, in FY 2000, USCG seized a record 132,480 pounds of cocaine with an estimated import value of $4.4 billion in FY 2000, while also confiscating over 50,000 pounds of marijuana [4, 5].

1. Executive Office of the President, Office of National Drug Control Policy, National Drug Control Strategy 2001, chapter 1, available at, as of Jan. 8, 2002.
2. Office of Naval Intelligence and U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. Coast Guard, Threats and Challenges to Maritime Security, 1999, available at, as of September 2000.
3. U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. Coast Guard, "New Reporting Requirements for Ships Entering, Leaving U.S.," Oct. 3, 2001 media advisory, available at Reporting_requirements.htm, as of Jan. 9, 2002.
4. _____. Office of Law Enforcement, "Drug Interdiction," available at, as of Jan. 9, 2002.
5. _____. 2000 Annual Report of the U.S. Coast Guard (Washington, DC: 2001).
6. U.S. Department of the Treasury, U.S. Customs Service, "Seizure Activity Picking Up for Customs Officers in West Texas and New Mexico," Sept. 28, 2001 press release, available at, as of Jan. 13, 2002.
7. _____. Trade Partnerships Against Terrorism, available at, as of Jan. 17, 2002.
8. _____. "U.S. Customs Service Drug Seizure Numbers Up," Jan. 15, 2002 press release, available at, as of Jan. 17, 2002.

U.S. Aircraft Manufacturing

Both commercial and military aircraft play a key role in supporting the security of the United States. Thus, maintaining a strong manufacturing base with a trained and skilled workforce capable of designing and building aircraft and aircraft components is an issue of national security.

In 2000, the aerospace industry (which includes civil and military aircraft as well as space and missile systems producers) employed an estimated 793,000 workers, representing about 4 percent of all manufacturing jobs in the United States. The number of U.S. aircraft produced annually has declined sharply since a high of over 18,000 civil aircraft was produced in 1979 (figure 1). While the U.S. aerospace industry as a whole remains internationally competitive, economic conditions and the September 11 terrorist attacks have caused aircraft manufacturers to expect a sharp decline in demand for new civilian planes [2].

Since 1979, the numbers of large transport-category aircraft produced have varied each year but show an overall increase of 39 percent, with 522 of these aircraft produced in 2001. The Aerospace Industries Association forecasts that U.S. production will decline by 28 percent in 2002 compared with 2001 [3].

Sales of general aviation aircraft were depressed in 2001. Shipments dropped 10 percent to 2,556 from a decade-long high of 2,802 in 2000. However, the industry is still far from the 20-year low of 899 in 1992. During the late 1990s, the general aviation industry rebounded, but it has yet to reach the record high of 17,817 aircraft produced in 1978 [1, 2].

The U.S. aerospace industry is the single largest U.S. net exporter of manufactured goods, with a positive trade balance in 2001 of $30 billion (figure 2). The industry exports over 40 percent of its total output and over 70 percent of its commercial products. Aircraft manufacturing and sales make up the largest component of the U.S. aerospace industry. U.S. manufacturers shipped 3,483 civil aircraft in 2001 with a total value of $44 billion, an increase of nearly $5 billion over 2000 levels but a decline of 297 aircraft. The 522 civil transport aircraft produced in 2001 represent a value of $35 billion [3].

While U.S. production of civil aircraft had been increasing in recent years, production of military aircraft was declining. In 2000, the United States produced 477 military aircraft, down from 811 in 1995. Of that total, 244 were exported and 233 were delivered to U.S. military agencies. Much of the decline in U.S. military aircraft production can be attributed to the end of the Cold War [1].

1. Aerospace Industries Association, Aerospace Facts and Figures: 1999/2000 (Washington, DC: 1999).
2. _____. Director of Aerospace Research Center, personal communication, Feb. 7, 2001.
3. _____. Year-End Review and Forecast, available at yr_ender.cfm , as of Jan. 7, 2002.

U.S. Merchant Shipbuilding and Repair

Because of the need to ship military forces and materiel around the globe, maintaining a strong manufacturing base capable of designing and building ships is a national security concern. Ships provide much of the capacity needed to move international trade. Shipbuilding is, thus, a key industry in the United States and around the world.

South Korea overtook Japan in 1999 as the world leader in merchant shipbuilding in terms of gross tonnage. These two countries accounted for 69 percent of the gross tonnage of merchant ships on order as of September 2001. The United States ranked 8th, with almost 1.5 percent of the world's gross tonnage on order (table 1). Nevertheless, the U.S. shipbuilding industry has made some progress in its efforts to reemerge as an active participant in the commercial shipbuilding market (figure 1). The United States has 19 major private shipyards that can build vessels over 122 meters in length. More than 200 privately owned firms repair ships, but only 73 are classified as major repair yards with the capacity to handle vessels over 400 feet in length [3].

Between 1994 and 1999, the U.S. shipbuilding industry invested more than $5.6 billion in capital improvement projects, the majority of which were targeted at increasing efficiency and competitiveness. Investments were made in new shipyard layouts, and new cranes, transporters, automated equipment, and highly mechanized production systems were purchased [2]. Several government programs also have provided assistance in revitalization efforts. These include the National Shipbuilding and Conversion Act of 1993 and an expanded Federal Ship Financing Program (Title XI) of the Merchant Marine Act of 1936. Title XI provides credit guarantees for both shipbuilding and port improvement, up to a maximum of 87.5 percent of total project costs. The total value of approved Title XI projects varies from year to year, mainly because of market factors (figure 2). Several large projects approved during 1996 and 1999, for instance, account for the spikes in those years. In 2000, the value of all projects approved dropped about 48 percent to just over $1 billion and decreased again in 2001 by 18 percent [4].

Revitalization efforts, however, have been complicated by an overall decline in world shipbuilding price levels. In 1999, world newbuilding price levels were less than in 1998 [2]. Price levels for 30,000 and 70,000 deadweight ton (dwt) bulk carriers declined the most of all vessel types, by 21 and 17 percent, respectively. In contrast, the price levels of the largest category of bulk carriers, 120,000 dwt, decreased the least: 8 percent compared with 1998. The downward trend in vessel prices continued to be fueled by increasing competition among Asian shipyards during 1999. South Korea gained a greater share of the market during the late 1990s due to productivity and technology enhancements, as well as devaluation of its currency. During the first half of 2000, worldwide prices for the smaller categories of bulk carriers and tankers remained constant, while the largest categories of bulk carriers and tankers rebounded somewhat from recent declines [1].

1. United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, Review of Maritime Transport 2000 (New York, NY: United Nations, 2000), p. 35.
2. U.S. Department of Transportation, Maritime Administration, MARAD '99 (Washington, DC: May 2000), pp. 16-20.
3. ____. Office of Shipbuilding, available at, as of Jan. 7, 2002.
4. ____. Office of Ship Financing, "Title XI Financing," available at, as of Feb. 4, 2002.

World Petroleum Reserves

Because transportation depends on petroleum for about 95 percent of its energy needs, the long-term availability of petroleum supplies is a key concern. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) estimates that the United States has 11 percent (83 billion barrels) of the worldwide total of still undiscovered conventional petroleum, 76 billion barrels of reserve growth, and 32 billion barrels of remaining reserves (table 1). Alaska, Texas, California, and offshore areas of the Gulf of Mexico accounted for 78 percent of U.S. proved oil reserves in 2000 [1].

Total world oil resources are about 2,311 billion barrels, including undiscovered oil, reserve growth, and remaining reserves. Undiscovered conventional oil reserves are estimated to be 732 billion barrels worldwide. This estimate is 20 percent higher than earlier USGS assessments, reflecting the expectation that greater reserves than were previously thought to exist will be discovered in the Middle East, the northeast Greenland Shelf, the West Siberia and Caspian Sea areas of the former Soviet Union, and the Niger and Congo delta areas of Africa. USGS also notes that for some areas, such as Canada, Mexico, and China, estimated undiscovered reserves are lower than previously reported [2].

In the last 100 years, an estimated 710 billion barrels of oil have been produced worldwide. The United States has produced about 171 billion barrels or nearly 50 percent of its total oil endowment [2]. After annual declines through most of the 1990s, proved reserves rose 1.3 percent in 2000 over 1999 [1]. Most of this increase is attributed to discoveries of new reserves in the offshore areas of the Gulf of Mexico. Although worldwide resources are plentiful, their availability is affected by production costs, technologies, markets, and national policies. The price of crude oil also affects reserve totals. The higher oil prices of December 2000, for instance, turned some uneconomic 1999 U.S. reserves into 2000 proven reserves.

1. U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Information Administration, U.S. Crude Oil, Natural Gas, and Natural Gas Plant Liquids Reserves 2000 (Washington, DC: 2001).
2. U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey, World Petroleum Assessment 2000-Description and Results (Washington, DC: June 2000), also available at, as of February 2002.

Transportation's Dependence on Imported Oil

Transportation is the only sector of the economy that consumes much more oil today than it did 20 years ago, making it vulnerable to oil disruptions. Beginning in 1997, the United States imported more than half of the crude oil and petroleum products that it consumed (figure 1), with net imports reaching 10.1 million barrels a day (mmbd) in 2000. The transportation sector alone consumed nearly 13 mmbd, which is equivalent to all domestic production plus approximately 40 percent of imports [2].

Oil imports emerged as a national security issue in the early 1970s when they grew to a significant fraction of total oil consumption, and several supplier nations coordinated efforts to reduce supplies on the world market. Today, Canada, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Mexico, and Nigeria are the top five suppliers of U.S. crude oil and petroleum products [2] (table 1). Of these, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, and Venezuela are members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).1 In 2000, OPEC supplied about 50 percent (5.1 mmbd) of net imports, or 26 percent of total U.S. oil consumption (figure 2).

The U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Information Administration, expects non-OPEC oil production to increase in the future. Much of this increase will come from the former Soviet Union. Other areas expected to increase production levels include offshore regions of West Africa, the North Sea, Canada, Mexico, Colombia, and Brazil [1].

Nevertheless, as U.S. consumption increases and domestic production decreases, dependence on foreign oil supplies is rising. Whether a high level of oil imports poses serious strategic and economic problems for the United States depends on several factors, such as oil prices, ability of markets to respond to changes in supply and demand, OPEC's market share, and the importance of oil to the economy.

1OPEC includes Algeria, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Venezuela.

1. U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Information Administration, Annual Energy Outlook 2001 (Washington, DC: December 2000).
2. _____. Annual Energy Review 2000, tables 5.1 and 5.12c, available at