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Page history last edited by Béatrice H. Alves 5 years, 11 months ago



Lexical domain

Bomb threat/alert/scare

disembarking passengers, diversion, baggage identification, fuel dumping/jettisoning, aircraft interior, crew actions/behaviour, ground services, airport installations

aircraft interior, search methods,

Problems linked to passengers' behaviour + Unlawful interference

violent/threatening behaviour, reasons (drunkenness, etc.), aircraft interior, damage, weapons, actions to overpower, police/fire rescue team assistance requested, demands, ethnic origin, physical description of person(s), political allegiances, ground services, airport installations, injuries/wounds, stowaways

violent threatening behaviour, drugs, firearms, injuries, mental instability, demands, threats, means of calming, flight deck and cabin personnel



Scanning the airplane


Are we really safe?

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Airport Security

The notion of having a “secure area” at a major international airport has been blown apart by the terrorist bombings this year at Istanbul Ataturk and Brussels airports.

Since 9/11, airport security has been almost entirely focused on screening passengers and baggage headed to flights. “Airside” areas of airports beyond checkpoints used to screen passengers, baggage and airport/airline employees were labeled “secure” by transportation security authorities focused on keeping bad actors and dangerous items off of aircraft.

Needless to say, a rethinking of airport security is now in order. The Brussels and Ataturk attacks, plus the long lines witnessed at major US airport security checkpoints this spring, mandate a real questioning of the way things have been done for the past 15 years.

But there are no easy answers. At Ataturk, in fact, screening had been pushed all the way back to terminal entrances. That, of course, creates crowds at terminal entrances that can be targeted—and that appears to be what happened at Ataturk. If there is going to be screening, it has to be done somewhere, and therefore some crowding somewhere is inevitable.

Read more about it on Air Transport World 

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TSA changes rules for who must go through body scanner

NN)The Transportation Security Administration can now mandate some passengers go through a body scanner even if the travelers ask to opt out and get a full-body pat-down instead.

Mandated screening for some passengers would be "warranted by security considerations in order to safeguard transportation security," the TSA said in a document updating the protocol.

The change comes at a time of heightened concern about aviation security and terror plots against commercial aviation. 

The TSA said the benefit of using the technology is it "improves threat detection capabilities for both metallic and nonmetallic threat objects." In other words, the scanners can catch weapons hidden in clothes that a pat-down might miss. 

The agency said it does not store any personally identifiable information from the body scanner, known as Advanced Imaging Technologies, or AIT



Read and watch more about it on CNN




Reshaping and strengthening aviation security

30 January 2015 - 3:21pm

The heightened security measures for passengers and crews at airports have become cumbersome and do represent a big challenge for the aviation business’ expansion. However, new threats keep emerging: we are facing record levels of laser attacks and cyber threats are lurking behind the corner. Aviation industry is changing. And so are the needs of the aviation security regimes. In a newly released publication, ECA maps out the key areas of aviation security for today and tomorrow as well as the pilots’ perspective on reshaping security in our sector.

“Secure Skies” is the result of the operational experience of airline pilots and their close involvement in the work carried out by ICAO, the EU, National Authorities and aviation stakeholders. In this publication ECA provides the pilots’ perspective on how security and facilitation are currently handled and why a different way of thinking and approaching aviation security is needed to address the current air traffic growth in Europe.

The world has seen the exponential growth of additional measures for crews and passenger alike: screenings, including the use of metal detectors, canine brigades, explosive trace detectors but also body, shoe, liquids and luggage scanners. The introduction of additional multiple layers has progressively rendered the whole aviation security system cumbersome. Its usefulness however, has not been improved while the related cost has increased exponentially.

Moving from a reactive perspective to a more proactive and predictive one, integrating threat assessment, risk management, differentiation, unpredictability & randomness at security screening becomes essential. The aim is to ensure better security while allowing the majority of passengers who do not pose a threat to receive a speedy and efficient screening.


But beyond that, there is a need to go back to basics and ask the question: “If we build the entire security system from scratch, how would it look like?”  

As “Secure Skies” argues, the entire system needs a reboot. Read more in the publication


Read more on this topic and others on ECA


Letting knives back on planes

TSA chief defends letting knives back on planes

Bart Jansen7:30a.m. EDT March 15, 2013

The head of the air marshals union says it's "insane" to let passengers carry knives on planes, but the TSA chief says it needs to focus on other, more dangerous, threats.


WASHINGTON — Transportation Security Administration chief John Pistole defended his decision to let passengers carry small knives back on board flights Thursday, saying "these are not things that terrorists are continuing to use."

Instead, he told House members on Capitol Hill that airport security officers should be concentrating on non-metal explosives that have the capability to blow a hole in a plane.

Pistole last week announced that passengers could carry on small penknives and some sporting equipment such as two golf clubs, hockey sticks and small, souvenir baseball bats for the first time since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Read more about it on USA today


Not letting knives back on planes

TSA Abandons Plan to Allow Knives on Planes

Lee Ferrara | June 6, 2013 | 1 Comment



The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is abandoning a plan to allow passengers to carry small knives, souvenir bats, golf clubs and othersports equipment onto planes in the face of fierce congressional and industry opposition, the head of the agency said Wednesday.

By scuttling the plan to drop the knives and sports equipment from TSA’s list of prohibited items, the agency can focus its attention on other priorities, including expanding its Pre-Check program to identify ahead of time travelers who don’t pose a security risk, TSA Administrator John Pistole told The Associated Press.


Hijack? Pilots Kept In Dark During Hijack Scare


There was tension in the air and in the cockpit of an American Airlines aircraft at New York's JFK Airport on Monday when the arriving American plane and a Finn Air flight were ordered to a remote area instead of getting instructions for their gates. Authorities had received a threat that armed terrorists were concealed in the wheel wells of both aircraft and the response was predictable. However, for whatever reason, the authorities elected not to tell the American pilot, at least, why there were fire trucks and armed police around his plane. As the accompanying video shows, the American captain was having none of that.


As the ground controller continues to try to stall his requests for information, the increasingly frustrated pilot issues an ultimatum. "Somebody's got to give us the reason or we're going to evacuate the aircraft. You got 60 seconds." The controller finally relents and the passengers avoid a ride on the inflatable slides. The threats were a hoax and the aircraft were cleared a few hours later.

Read the full article on AVwebFlash

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Bombproof bag

BombProof Bag.mp4

A new system to resist terrorist bombs smuggled onto aircraft has been tested in dramatic experiments.
A device called FlyBag is designed to absorb the shockwaves and shrapnel caused by explosions.
If security fails and a bomb reaches the luggage hold, the idea is that the blast would be safely contained.
The trials - using old jets at Cotswolds Airport in Gloucestershire - showed that explosions on board caused no damage.
The bag involves a novel mix of four different layers of material including one based on Kevlar, which is used in bullet-proof jackets.
The idea is that the bag is not only lightweight but also strong and flexible enough to handle the energetic effects of a blast without breaking.
Current designs for hardened luggage containers are based on reinforced metal and many airlines have seen them as too heavy and costly. The FlyBag project is funded by the European Commission and is run by a consortium of institutes and specialist companies.

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Hijack an airplane with a smartphone

Hugo Teso told a crowd at an Amsterdam conference that he spent three years coding the tools he used.

A German security consultant, who's also a commercial pilot, has demonstrated tools he says could be used to hijack an airplane remotely, using just an Android phone.

Speaking at the Hack in the Box security summit in Amsterdam, Netherlands, Hugo Teso said Wednesday that he spent three years developing SIMON, a framework of malicious code that could be used to attack and exploit airline security software, and an Android app to run it that he calls PlaneSploit.

Using a flight simulator, Teso showed off the ability to change the speed, altitude and direction of a virtual airplane by sending radio signals to its flight-management system. Current security systems don't have strong enough authentication methods to make sure the commands are coming from a legitimate source, he said.

"You can use this system to modify approximately everything related to the navigation of the plane," Teso told Forbes after his presentation. "That includes a lot of nasty things."

Hugo Teso told a crowd at an Amsterdam conference that he spent three years coding the tools he used.

He told the crowd that the tools also could be used to do things like change what's on a pilot's display screen or turn off the lights in the cockpit. With the Android app he created, he said, he could remotely control a plane by simply tapping preloaded commands like "Please Go Here" and the ominous "Visit Ground."

The Federal Aviation Administration said it is aware of Teso's claims, but said the hacking technique does not pose a threat on real flights because it does not work on certified flight hardware.


Read the full article on CNN

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No more oxygen masks in lavatories

Citing security concerns, the federal government in secrecy last month ordered every airline in the United States to remove emergency oxygen in every lavatory on all 6,000 domestic commercial aircraft.

Under Air Worthiness Directive 2011-04-09, made public this week, the Federal Aviation Administration directed all airlines to disable the lavatory oxygen generators to "eliminate a potential safety and security vulnerability.”

That means that if there’s a sudden loss of cabin pressure, now only those passengers at their seats will have oxygen flowing to the masks that drop down from the ceiling.

Read more about it on NBC news  or find the directive here


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What causes air rage?

Read on Air Rage here

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Training  to deal with violent passengers

View more news videos at: http://www.nbcmiami.com/video.



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Improving security procedures

Any suggestion?



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Simple  low-cost security


What do you think of it? Is it feasible and reasonable?





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US to place full-body scanners at 11 new airports; Italy, Nigeria, UK progressing

US Dept. of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano on Friday disclosed which 11 airports will be first to receive advanced imaging technology units purchased with American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds, while the Transportation Security Administration installed the first units at Boston Logan.

AIT units also will be deployed by the summer at Charlotte, Chicago O'Hare, Cincinnati, Fort Lauderdale, Kansas City, Los Angeles, San Jose, Oakland, Columbus and San Diego. Currently, 40 previously purchased units are deployed at 19 USA airports. TSA expects to deploy a total of 450 by year end (ATW's Airports Today, February 2010).

Meanwhile, Italy's ENAC began testing two types of scanners last week at Rome Fiumicino on passengers departing for the US and other "sensitive destinations." Tests will run 4-6 weeks, with plans in place to install scanners at Milan Malpensa and Venice as well.


YouTube plugin error


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Are scanners efficient?

Read the transcription and more here.


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Should children be searched too?


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When security checks become invasive

Read more about it on Action News or Christopher Elliott's blog


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Should security be outsourced?


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Listen to a priority request



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Response to unruly passenger behavior


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US National Security Airspace Explained


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Figures show thousands of security breaches at U.S. airports

from CNN

Washington (CNN) -- The nation's airports have suffered more than 25,000 security breaches since November 2001, according to a House committee, citing information it says it received from the Transportation Security Administration.

The breaches -- amounting to about seven a day, or about five per year at every airport -- include everything from people who accidentally leave a bag on a checkpoint conveyor belt to those who purposefully evade security and get onto airplanes without proper screening.

A TSA spokesman did not contest the figure, but questioned its significance, saying all breaches are investigated and resolved. The agency said it did not have a breakdown of breaches by severity.

With about 25,000 of these incidents over a decade at more than 450 TSA-regulated airports, this amounts to just over five such incidents per airport per year, according to the TSA.

The 25,000 breaches include:

-- 14,322 breaches into secure entries, passages or other means of access to the secure side of the airport.

-- Approximately 6,000 breaches involving a TSA screener failing to screen a passenger or a passenger's carry-on property, or doing either improperly.

-- 2,616 instances involving an individual getting past the checkpoint or exit lane without submitting to all screening and inspections. Some 1,388 of these have occurred at the perimeter areas of airports.

The information was released by the House Oversight and Government Reform subcommittee on national security, homeland defense and foreign operations in advance of a hearing Wednesday on airport perimeter security.

TSA spokesman Nicholas Kimball said the figures represent a "tiny fraction of 1% percent of the more than 5.5 billion travelers at the more than 450 airports nationwide that we have screened effectively since 9/11."

"We take every security incident seriously and take appropriate action accordingly which is why TSA keeps close track of all 'breaches' -- a very broadly defined set of accidental or purposeful security violations, including those where an individual is 'caught in the act' and immediately apprehended," Kimball said in a statement.


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Hijack ends in ditching

Read about it on Wikipedia



Questions to think about

  • How could airlines prevent air-rage incidents?
  • How should cabin crew be trained to deal with these incidents?
  • Houw should violent passengers be restrained?
  • How should passengers be punished for such incidents?
  • Do you know any stories of air-rage incidents?



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Aviation Security Threats and Realities



While understanding that the threat is very real, it is also critical to recognize that there is no such thing as absolute, foolproof security. This applies to ground-based facilities as well as aircraft. If security procedures and checks have not been able to keep contraband out of high-security prisons, it is unreasonable to expect them to be able to keep unauthorized items off aircraft, where (thankfully) security checks of crew and passengers are far less invasive than they are for prisoners. As long as people, luggage and cargo are allowed aboard aircraft, and as long as people on the ground crew and the flight crew have access to aircraft, aircraft will remain vulnerable to a number of internal and external threats.

This reality is accented by the sheer number of passengers that must be screened and number of aircraft that must be secured. According to figures supplied by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), in 2006, the last year for which numbers are available, the agency screened 708,400,522 passengers on domestic flights and international flights coming into the United States. This averages out to over 1.9 million passengers per day.

Another reality is that, as mentioned above, jihadists and other people who seek to attack aircraft have proven to be quite resourceful and adaptive. They carefully study security measures, identify vulnerabilities and then seek to exploit them. Indeed, last September, when we analyzed the innovative designs of the explosive devices employed by AQAP, we called attention to the threat they posed to aviation more than three months before the Christmas 2009 bombing attempt. As we look at the issue again, it is not hard to see, as we pointed out then, how their innovative efforts to camouflage explosives in everyday items and hide them inside suicide operatives’ bodies will continue and how these efforts will be intended to exploit vulnerabilities in current screening systems.

Read more: Aviation Security Threats and Realities | STRATFOR

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Man threatens to set fire on airliner

November 13, 2002|By Items compiled from Tribune news services.

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL — A Brazilian shish kebab vendor threatened to set himself on fire with gasoline and storm the cockpit of an airliner over Brazil on Tuesday before being subdued by passengers and the crew, the airline said.

The 56-year-old man wanted to divert the Gol airliner toward Brazil's capital, Brasilia, to fly over the nation's congress and call attention to his "sad situation as a worker without a pension," federal police spokesman Francisco Morais said.



Gol said the incident occurred on flight 1701 carrying about 70 passengers from Cuiaba to Campo Grande, two cities deep inside Brazil's interior.

Police identified the man as a shish kebab street vendor named Clodovel Dantas Lacerda and said he had smuggled the gasoline in a soft-drink bottle.


Read more on the Chicago Tribune or on Folha de São Paulo (in Portuguese)

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Kidnapper tries to crash plane in the presidential residence 13 years before the Sept. 11! It happened in Brazil



Raymond worked as a tractor driver in Minas Gerais inConstruction Mendes Jr., but was fired due to poor situation of the Brazilian economy that passed in the late 80's, high unemploymentand inflation exorbitant.

Unemployed and without expectations, Maranhão blamed the thenpresident, Jose Sarney, for its financial doldrums. So, he decided to hijack a plane and go to Brasilia, where he hoped to hit "up" withthe Brazilian president.
On September 29, 1988, the Boeing 737-300 left towards Porto Velho to Rio de Janeiro, where scales provided in Brasilia, Goiania and Belo Horizonte. In the mining town, MaranhãoRaimundo Nonato Alves da Conceicao, 28, boarded the thenVASP Flight 375, bound for Rio de Janeiro.

However, 20 minutes after taking off at the airport Confins,Raimundo Nonato rose from his chair and pulled out a gun 32according to the aircraft cabin. On board were 105 passengers.Remember that, at the time, the Brazilian airports do not use x-ray equipment to board domestic flights, which facilitated the passageof the gun.
Before arriving at the cabin of the aircraft, was prevented by Commissioner Raymond Ronaldo Dias, who was shot in the ear by the attitude. Then the kidnapper broke into the cockpit door with fiveshots and announced the kidnapping, however, one of the shots hitthe leg of the engineer Gilberto close.

Read the complete article on LiveLeak  or more on Wikipedia 

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Robbers hijack a plane in southern Brazil

Five barefaced armed robbers on Wednesday hijacked a Boeing 737 passenger plane, forced it to land an a remote airstrip in southern Brazil, and got away with at least $3.3 million in cash which it was carrying for banks.

The 66 passengers and six crew members were unharmed. Most were Italian, French and Japanese tourists returning from the spectacular Iguacu Falls on the border with Argentina, police and airline officials said.

The five men, all armed, boarded the Vasp Airline jet at Foz do Iguacu on a flight to Curitiba, both in the southern state of Parana.

Read more about  it on ABC News or on the Aviation Safety Network database



Bomb hoax

B-6359 during evacuation

A Shenzhen Airlines Airbus A320-200, registration B-6359 performing flight ZH-9243 from Xian to Shenzhen (China), was enroute near Guilin (China) when the crew was informed phone calls had been received about bombs on board of a number of Shenzhen Airlines aircraft. The crew decided to divert to Guilin, where the aircraft landed safely and stopped on the runway. During the subsequent evacuation of the aircraft a number of passengers received minor injuries.

Read more about it on the Aviation Herald

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But what if the pilot is the problem?

DALLAS (AP) - Reinforced doors with keypad entries. Body scanners and pat-downs. Elaborate crew maneuvers when a pilot has to use the restroom. All those tactics are designed to keep dangerous people out of the cockpit. But what if the pilot is the problem?

With no answers yet in the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370; investigators have said they’re considering many options: hijacking, sabotage, terrorism or catastrophic equipment failure. Nobody knows if the pilots are heroes who tried to save a crippled airliner or if one collaborated with hijackers or was on a suicide mission.

Whatever the outcome, the mystery has raised concerns about whether airlines and governments do enough to make sure that pilots are mentally fit to fly.

“One of the most dangerous things that can happen is the rogue captain,” said John Gadzinski, a Boeing 737 captain and aviation-safety consultant. “If you get somebody who — for whatever reason — turns cancerous and starts going on their own agenda, it can be a really bad situation.”

Malaysia Airlines said this week that its pilots take psychological tests during the hiring process.


“You’re sitting down with a doctor twice a year, going through a series of questions related to a lot of matters,” said Lee Moak, president of the Air Line Pilots Association. “We have the safest airspace in the world. This is another indicator that our members are healthy physically and mentally.”

It is rare for the public to hear about a pilot having a mental breakdown, but not unprecedented:

– The JetBlue pilot who left the cockpit and ran through the cabin, ranting about Jesus and al-Qaida. Passengers tackled him, and the co-pilot made an emergency landing in Texas. The 49-year-old pilot had passed his medical exam three months earlier. He was charged with interfering with a flight crew but found not guilty due to insanity. A later psychiatric evaluation was sealed by the court.
– On a cargo flight in 1994, an off-duty FedEx pilot facing a disciplinary hearing attacked the cockpit crew with a hammer and a spear gun before being subdued.
Pilot suicide is suspected in some deadly crashes in other countries:
– A top aviation official in Mozambique said that a preliminary investigation into a November 2013 crash that killed 33 people pointed to a deliberate act by the pilot, who apparently locked the co-pilot out of the cockpit. The investigation is continuing.
– In 1999, U.S. investigators determined that the co-pilot of an EgyptAir plane deliberately crashed into the Atlantic shortly after takeoff from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport. All 217 people on board died.
– In 1997, SilkAir Flight 185 plunged into a river in Indonesia, killing all 104 aboard. U.S. investigators said that the pilot probably crashed on purpose, but an Indonesian investigation was inconclusive.
– In 1982, a Japan Airlines jet plunged into Tokyo Bay while approaching Haneda Airport. The captain, who had previously been grounded for mental illness, reversed some of the engines. Twenty-four of the 174 people on board were killed.

(© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)



Read the full article on CBS Dallas


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