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“Business as Usual” at JetBlue After bin Laden’s Death, CEO Says

Aaron Task
Editor in Chief
Fin - Daily Ticker - US

Following the death of Osama bin Laden, the State Department issued a worldwide travel alert for U.S. citizens while the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued statements reaffirming what the DHS dubbed "a heightened state of vigilance."

So expect even tighter security measures at the airport including, as the TSA put it, "the use of explosives detection technology, physical bag checks, random gate screening, canine teams and behavior detection officers."

In other words, longer security lines and more probing (literally and figuratively) from TSA agents.

Despite the hassle of flying and fear of retaliation by bin Laden's followers, there's been no change in consumers' behavior since the news of his death, according to David Barger, CEO of JetBlue Airways.

"Fair to say it's business as usual, even with the news of last Sunday," Barger says in the accompanying video, taped at JetBlue's 'T5' terminal in New York's JFK Airport.

The CEO declined to discuss JetBlue's specific security measures but doesn't foresee "further escalation" in the immediate future. But should they be necessary, he predicts Americans will put up with them, as has generally been the case since 9/11.

Whether at the airport or with local law enforcement, Americans understand the need for heightened security measures and "have adapted to it," Barger says.

Editor's note: Stay tuned for additional segments from The Daily Ticker's exclusive interview with Barger.