Monday, July 6, 2015

Flightdeck doors highlight the safety/security dilemma

This is an interesting short opinion piece I found on cockpit door security........enjoy!
(Michael Carter APF Editor and Chief) 

Safety and security have long formed a comforting ­alliterative pairing in airline circles ­– which disguises the fact that they’re not necessarily the same thing.

While a police officer might suggest you fit a lock to your front door for security, a firefighter could advise you to remove it for safety.

It’s a problem that is irreconcilable at its most fundamental level, which is why there can be no simple one-size-fits-all solution to cockpit protection.

Before the events of 9/11, security and safety had typically been separate – security on the ground, safety in the air. But when the armoured cockpit door was hastily ushered in to defend it against the enemy ­without, the flightdeck became vulnerable to enemies within: not audacious publicity-seeking hijackers, but the cliff-edge mind-states of pilots harbouring undetected psychological pressures.

When Germanwings flight 9525 disintegrated in a southern French valley in March, the once clear-cut logic behind the secure cockpit door – already strained by the LAM crash in Namibia, the Ethiopian diversion to Geneva, and perhaps even the loss of Malaysia ­Airlines MH370 – shattered with it.

Europe’s aviation safety authority has set itself the task of picking up the pieces and examining whether, post-Germanwings, the reasoning behind the flightdeck barrier still holds. When is a door not a door?

(Flightglobal News)

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