Initial reports claim that a man who tried to bring a loaded weapon through a security checkpoint at Terminal B of the Houston International Airport is now dead. The man fired two shots into the air before an air marshal returned fire. The air marshal is said to have missed the shooter, who grabbed a second gun and turned it on himself.
The shooter walked right into the Houston airport with a semi-automatic military-style weapon, according to one witness. There are no indications yet that anyone else was seriously injured in the airport shooting.
Who Is Responsible For The Safety Of Air Travelers?
While the airlines themselves are typically responsible for traveler safety once a plane has been boarded, responsibility for injuries sustained on the tarmac, in the terminal or any other area of the airport may not be as clear. Often, a public entity runs the local airport, rather than any one particular airline. The George Bush Intercontinental Airport is managed by the Houston Airport System, a department of the City of Houston.
Further investigation will be necessary to determine whether the airport was inadequately secured, contributing to today’s shooting death.
Airport injuries are not only those that are tragic and sudden, like today’s shooting. Dangers presented to travelers at the airport can be as subtle as a slippery or uneven walkway, construction areas, and poorly-lit parking lots.
Airports can also present serious dangers to airline and airport employees. Dealing with heavy equipment and even heavy baggage can cause serious workplace injuries.
Source: Source: CNN, “Man kills self at Houston’s Bush Intercontinental Airport, authorities say,” May 2, 2013