As I write this, the world (well, a large portion of the population anyway) is remembering the fifth anniversary of 9/11. Airport security certainly increased after that specific 2001 event and after the thwarted terrorist attacks at Heathrow Airport in August security measures were stepped up again...
On 23 August SAfm had some guests in the studio to discuss aviation security and I cannot say I was impressed with what I heard! A comment from one of the guests was that in light of the increase in security following the terrorist threats at Heathrow earlier in the month, there is actually no need for passengers to have any luggage with them in the aircraft at all, as everything they may require is available from the stewards. My first thought was that I, as an example, would definitely need to have my insulin syringes with me on a long-distance flight. My second thought was that if normal luggage was not broken into and/or stolen on such a regular basis, passengers would feel safer putting their valuables through with the rest of their luggage.
A few callers said that they had managed to get items like mace and a Leatherman through with hand luggage and the studio guests were stunned by this, one caller said that the people watching the monitors at the X-ray machines often did not pay attention.
I hoped that the sentiments of the callers was not an accurate reflection of the standard of security at our airports, but rather that only listeners who had had bad experiences called in to the programme.
Our feature this month is on security in the transportation sector, see what airports, ports and rail companies are doing about it.
Until next month, enjoy the warmer weather and be safe!
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