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What Does Graffiti Say About Airport Security?

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Photo by Andrew at Here in Van Nuys

A couple weeks ago, Andrew Hurvitz at the Here in Van Nuys blog snapped this photo of the Sherman Way tunnel under the Van Nuys Airport and questioned the state of security. "Is it just my foolish and suspicious imagination that sees this tagged up tunnel as something which raises questions about security at Van Nuys Airport?" he asked. "This is evidence that security right on airport property needs to be stepped up again."

Since then, taggers in the tunnel have been arrested by Van Nuys Division officers of the LAPD according to Captain Fitzpatrick of the Los Angeles World Airports Police Department (LAWAPD).

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But what about 24/7 security? According to Diana Sanchez, Public & Community Relations Director for the airport, anytime there is a stalled/stopped vehicle or someone taking shelter, they are immediately removed by police, whether that be the LAPD or LAWAPD, who work closely together on all security matters around the airport. Sanchez had no comment on whether or not there were cameras in the tunnel.

According to LAPD officers at the Van Nuys Division, if the action of graffiti is happening, it is a 9-1-1 call. Surely, if there were cameras, all taggers in the tunnel would be caught, right?

What's going on at the federal level with the Valley airport? "Van Nuys is a general aviation airport, there is no TSA presense," explained Mico Melendez, Los Angeles Spokesman for the Transportation Security Administration. He added that at LAX, the Sepulveda Blvd. tunnel under the runway is monitored by uniformed police

As for Van Nuys, community members like Hurvitz ask good questions that can lead to improved results. For those who live in the area, there is an airport watch program.

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