Aerostar Puerto Rico, the company that manages and operates the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport, established an agreement with the Department of Public Security (DSP) and the Puerto Rico Police Bureau (NPPR) to reinforce its security with state agents.
According to Jorge Hernández, Aerostar’s CEO, the company will spend around $ 2 million in order to assign police officers exclusively to the SJU Airport.
“With this measure, Aerostar seeks to reinforce security at the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport in accordance with the requirements established by the federal agencies that regulate the facility. Up until now, the state police have been present at the airport, but now with this agreement, we are further expanding their presence and strengthening our commitment to providing police officers with specialized training in federal regulations,” said the CEO of Aerostar.
Aerostar will establish a police station at the SJU Airport
Hernández explained that Aerostar will cede several airport facilities free of charge to establish space for the new police station, as well as an anti-explosives and canine unit. The company will cover the costs for maintenance, air conditioning, electricity and water services for the new spaces. Among other measures, Aerostar will also allocate parking spaces for the police officers and will be responsible for the maintenance costs of five patrol cars.
The police agents assigned to the airport will receive training from Aerostar on the local and federal rules and protocols that govern the airport facility. The team of officers will also be tasked with providing preventive surveillance in designated areas, conducting investigations and interventions, providing support during emergencies and responding to various requests from federal agencies.
The Police Commissioner, Antonio López Figueroa, stated that as part of the new agreement, the NPPR will assign a total of 65 police officers who will work different shifts 24 hours a day.
López Figueroa added that Aerostar's investment allows NPPR to provide security service to the airport, while receiving compensation. Likewise, the private company contributes to the treasury, while also reducing the agency’s costs. The agreement also gives police officers appointed to the SJU Airport an advantage as they will receive advanced training and acquire additional knowledge in highly specialized areas.
Alexis Torres, Secretary of the DSP, highlights that the alliance also makes it possible for a more prominent and reliable police presence at the airport to ensure the safety of both local and foreign travelers.
The alliance provides numerous benefits
“Ensuring everyone's safety is our responsibility. We thank the Aerostar team for making this agreement viable for the benefit of Puerto Rico,” added Torres.
“We have been working for years to finalize this agreement. Thanks to the efforts of the DSP Secretary and Police Commissioner, we were able to finalize the alliance in a matter of months. We are confident that this agreement will serve as a model to emulate on how the private sector can collaborate and strengthen airport security,” Hernández concluded.