Revisiting the SAFE Port Act: Everything You Need to Know

February 6, 2020
By Mariana Reisacher

Client alert (2)

The Security & Accountability for Every Port Act (or SAFE Port Act) signed into law by President Bush on October 16th, 2006 has been a longstanding beacon of safety for the United States’ supply chain and was a victory for U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). The SAFE Port Act has effectively secured the nation’s ports for fourteen years and will continue to do so.

The overwhelming majority of the world’s trade is transported via ocean containers – a massive 90% according to the United Nations (UN). The SAFE Port Act has increased the security of every port in the U.S. and abroad to fulfill the CBP’s goal of thoroughly managing threats of terrorism to U.S. shipments. Some highlights and major provisions of this law include the following.

  • Radiation screening across the board with the newly optimized Radiation Portal Monitor (RPM) program, which detects even low levels of radiation and is able to differentiate between potential threats and “nuisance alarms”, or levels of radiation found in everyday items like bananas and kitty litter.
  • U.S. citizenship requirements and more thorough background checks for port facility owners.
  • Terrorism prevention and natural disaster emergency training for government and commercial personnel, including proper response protocol.
  • Establishment of security command centers and increased amounts of CBP officers through the Container Safety Initiative (CSI) to work with our host foreign government counterparts at ports of entry.
  • Finalization of the Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (CTPAT).

If you have any questions about the SAFE Port Act or CBP’s continuous efforts to secure our ports and strengthen the United States’ supply chain security, contact us.

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