ADMISSION: Free and open to the public

Plane crashes seize headlines and unnerve the public, but the resulting investigations don't always lead to resolving systemic problems in airline safety. And in some respects, security at airports suffers from similar problems.

David M. Primo, co-author of a new book, The Plane Truth, will discuss how crashes and terrorism affect people's perceptions of air safety and security as well as U.S. transportation policies at 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 21, at Barnes & Noble Booksellers, 3349 Monroe Ave.

The Plane Truth (Brookings Institution Press, $17.95 paperback) examines airline disasters and the resulting media attention and government investigations. Primo, assistant professor of political science at the University of Rochester, and co-author, Roger W. Cobb, professor of political science at Brown University, recommend several federal policy changes to promote enhanced aviation safety and security.

In particular, the book assesses three major crashes of the 1990s-USAir Flight 427 near Pittsburgh, ValuJet Flight 592 in the Florida Everglades, and TWA Flight 800 near Long Island Sound. The authors found that while safety is a primary concern in air travel, failure to agree on a definition of safety leads to conflicts in U.S. policy.

The book also deals with the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, which the authors believe turned attention away from airline safety and toward security. "This shift adds another dimension to the battle over aviation regulation, a battle that will be waged long into the future," say Primo and Cobb.

The discussion and book signing with Primo at the Pittsford Plaza bookstore are free and open to the public. For more information, contact (585) 586-6020.