Exclusive outtakes from industry leaders
U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano says she is reviewing recommendations on the color-coded threat alert system and experts are evenly split over its usefulness.
She said the committee of experts that made the recommendations to her were “equally divided, 50-50″ on whether the color-coded threat alert system developed after the Sept. 11 attacks was useful. It currently stands at “yellow” for elevated.
One recommendation the experts gave her is when the code becomes elevated, after a certain number of days it ought to automatically revert back to the lower level unless a decision is made to intentionally leave it higher.
“The problem is once you raise the level it is virtually impossible to reduce it for a number of political and public affairs reasons. So there would be an automatic revert once it were raised after a certain number of days,” she said at a Reuters Washington Summit. “I think that kind of recommendation makes a lot of sense.”
The travel and leisure industry is facing its worst downturn since 2001, as the recession eats away at companies’ travel budgets and forces individuals to cancel trips. Airlines are planning a drastic dip in capacity as demand for flights evaporates, and hotels and casinos are doing their best to adapt to the new reality after an unprecedented three-year boom. Already two casino operators have filed for bankruptcy and more may follow.
Chief executives of some of the world’s foremost airlines, hotel and casino companies will address the economic challenges and how they plan to survive them at Reuters Travel and Leisure Summit, to be held in New York, on March 2-4, 2009.
The Summit will generate a series of exclusive interviews and articles from our team of expert reporters, as well as regular blog postings and online video.