2006_09_lgatraff.jpgOn this relatively quiet Labor Day weekend, Senator Charles Schumer spoke out about problems at LaGuardia Airport. Basically, the tower is structurally damaged to the point where the Post ran this photo of tarps hanging to protect the equipment from leaks. And that's not all. From the Post:

- Its ground-radar system - which prevents runway collisions - fails during downpours.
- Structural cracks line the stairwell leading up to the tower cab.
- The US Airways terminal blocks the tower's view of busy ramps.
- Tangles of bare wire litter the floor around controllers' feet.
- Some equipment is up to 30 years old.

Schumer is looking for Senate funding for a new $60 million tower, before things go terribly wrong.

Also, at stake is the staffing: LaGuardia could have a staff of up to 36, but only has 26 "full trained" controllers - and four trainees - which sounds odd, since LaGuardia is one of the busiest airports in the country. The FAA claims that LGA is "well-staffed" and that the working conditions are "an anomaly." But why would you want an anomaly at such a busy airport?