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Crew Member Self Defense Training FAQs

Crew Member Self Defense Training Program

  • What is CMSDT?
    Answer: CMSDT stands for Crew Member Self Defense Training. The CMSDT program is a self-defense course provided at over 22 locations nationwide to U. S. passenger and cargo crew members. Administered by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Office of Law Enforcement/Federal Air Marshal Service, the course was developed in response to the Vision 100-Century of Aviation Act as a means to strengthen our nation’s aviation sector and enhance the safety of the traveling public.
  • Who is eligible to participate in the CMSDT program?
    Answer: CMSDT is open to all actively employed, or temporarily furloughed crew members of U.S. flag passenger and cargo carriers.
  • Why should cabin crew members attend CMSDT?
    Answer: CMSDT classes provide each and every participant numerous benefits. This voluntary program will equip flight and cabin crew members with effective responses for defending against an attacker on or off the job. Regardless of your physical size or fitness level, anyone can learn and execute these techniques quickly, efficiently and effectively. Here are just a few additional benefits in attending a CMSDT class near you:
    • Improved self-confidence knowing you are prepared to deal with potential threat situations on or off the job.
    • Increased awareness of surroundings which enhances your personal safety as well as ensuring cabin and crew members remain safe.
    • CMSDT training is conducted by certified instructors with self defense training experience in strict compliance with the Federal Air Marshal Service developed curriculum.
  • What will I learn?
    Answer: By completing this training, you will learn how to:
    • Identify and deter a person who might present a threat through behavioral recognition
    • Administer control, striking, and restrain techniques
    • Defend yourself against edged or contact weapons
  • Is there a cost for the training?
  • Answer: CMSDT training and all related training materials are free of charge. In addition, to support crew member’s improved skill development, crew members are welcome to repeat the course as often as they would like.
  • How long does the training last?
    Answer:The training program is designed to last approximately 4-hours.
  • Where is training offered?
    Answer:CMSDT classes are located at numerous locations nation-wide. Click here to see the current class schedule and check back often for updated local class schedules.
  • How do I sign up for CMSDT?
    Answer: Select a training location and date, and complete the CMSDT registration form. If you would prefer, feel free to call the CMSDT toll free line at 1-877-407-CMSD (2673) to register for a CMSDT class or to get direct answers to any questions you might have.
    • Please register at least two weeks prior to the training date to ensure your application is completely processed in advance of class.
    • To verify your eligibility to participate in CMSDT training, you will be asked to provide personal information such as your name, address, Social Security number and employing air carrier identification. TSA is committed to collecting, maintaining and disclosing this information in accordance with Federal privacy laws and regulations, as described in the CMSDT Program’s Privacy Act Statement.
  • Where can I get more information about the CMSDT program?
    Answer: Updated information on training dates, locations, eligibility requirements and the registration process is available from the TSA website at:, call the CMSDT toll free line at 1-877-407-CMSD (2673) or email your questions to The training schedule is updated regularly, so be sure to check back often.

    We recognize the demands of air carrier flight operations may create unexpected scheduling conflicts for crew members. If you must cancel, please be sure to notify the CMSDT program office as soon as possible so the training slot can be made available to your fellow crew members.

  • Register now!
Latest revision: 09 July 2013