U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Air and Marine Operations has announced it is waiving the requirement for Air Interdiction Agent minimum flight hours for the next year.
“Due to the critical work that Air Interdiction Agents conduct as law enforcement officers, applicants undergo a rigorous screening process to ensure their eligibility and suitability for employment at CBP,” said Andrea Bright, CBP’s Assistant Commissioner of Human Resources.
The waiver, approved by the Office of Personnel Management, pertains specifically to the qualification category “Flying Time, Last 12 Months,” which is for positions that involve flying both helicopters and airplanes. Prior to this, Air Interdiction Agent applicants were required to have 100 flying hours during the past 12 months. CBP has waived this prerequisite to align their qualification requirements with those of commercial airline pilots.
Air Interdiction Agents conduct airborne surveillance to detect and support the interdiction of the unlawful movement of people, illegal narcotics, and conveyances across the U.S. border; support search and rescue activities and other agencies relating to natural, humanitarian, environmental or other disasters; and conduct security missions for events designated as National Special Security Events or given Special Event Assessment Ratings.
CBP is also using direct-hire authority to fill these positions. Air Interdiction Agent positions require specialized skillsets, and applicants must be able to pass a three-part flight assessment, including an oral exam, a flight evaluation, and a structured interview, conducted over the course of a single day at the National Training Center in Oklahoma City.