D/FW to Secure Airfield Gates

To combine safety and security, the Dallas/Fort Worth Airport Board is looking at spending $1.4 million for barricades to block motorists from driving through the 19 unmanned gates onto the airfield.

Included would be nine net-style barricades, similar to the nets that capture runaway planes landing on aircraft carriers, said Alvy Dodson, D/FW vice president of public safety.

"They're already in use at Fort Hood," Dodson said.

D/FW plans to place the nets by the end of August in areas where drunken drivers have plowed unwittingly through the gates.

"Sometimes inebriated drivers have lost their way and crashed into these things," said Jim Crites, executive vice president of operations.

The contract with Temple-based MW Builders of Texas, which got preliminary approval from the operations committee Tuesday, also includes more traditional barricades for D/FW's other unmanned gates.

Last July, the D/FW board bought 10 barricades for attended airfield entry gates.

In other news, the Dallas City Council has reappointed Pamela Gates to the board. She had to briefly forfeit her seat for missing too many meetings last year.