Tuesday, March 10, 2009

NFL, Others Granted Exemption from Suits from Terrorism Victims

USA Today reports that the NFL "and dozens of other companies and organizations have won exemption from lawsuits under a post-9/11 law that prohibits them from being sued if terrorists attack a site they are protecting." The law known as Support Anti-terrorism by Fostering Effective Technologies (SAFETY Act), seeks to protect security providers "by guaranteeing they will not pay any claims that terror victims might file after an attack." The protection extends only to companies' services or equipment that the Dept. of Homeland Security has approved as being effective in anti-terrorism. The NFL became exempt from such suits after the DHS approved the league's nine-page stadium-security guidelines, which include digital security cameras in stadiums, quick searches on entering spectators and barriers that keep cars and trucks 100 feet from a stadium. Other beneficiaries of the legal protection include Boeing Corp., which got the exemption for its strengthened flight deck doors on planes, and IBM, which makes software used to more accurately verify names and identities. Protected companies must carry terrorism insurance. A DHS spokeswoman said the protection has led to "wider deployment of anti-terrorism technologies and services."

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