2006 transatlantic aircraft plot security reaction

This article details the security reaction to the 2006 alleged transatlantic aircraft plot.

United Kingdom

Following the raids, the terror alert level was raised by Britain's Joint Terrorist Analysis Centre from 'severe' to 'critical', signalling an attack was believed to be imminent, although this was only done after the raid.]

Several pilots have complained about the "ridiculous" luggage restrictions that was thought up by "utter morons", the Sunday Herald reported. Carolyn Evans, head of flight safety at the British Airline Pilots Association, said that "the procedures put in place are not sustainable long term, and unless the passengers are treated more reasonably we will not have an industry left". [ [http://www.sundayherald.com/57459 Are we really at risk from snacks on a plane?] , Sunday Herald, 20 August 2006]

Economic effects

"The Times" commented the day after the arrests, that the economic effects were minor and that the FTSE 100 index showed only "mild signs of strain", suggesting that terror was already priced into assets, that the market impact will be contained, and that "what is lost on the swings may be gained on the roundabouts". It observes that the real commercial risk is that "people's behaviour is altered... change may come so subtly and subconsciously that it is hard to see, let alone measure... people may stop travelling for example, not because they are scared of being blown up, but because they are tired of complying with necessary security measures." [ The Times paper edition August 11 2006, p.45, "terror may already be priced into values"]

Estimates have also been made of the cost to airlines of their disrupted business. British Airways had to cancel 1280 flights, at a cost of £40 million. [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/5316920.stm BBC NEWS | Business | BA says terror alert cost it £40m ] ] Ryanair had to cancel 500 flightsFact|date=February 2007, and are suing the UK government for the £3.3 million the cancellations cost them. [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/5285102.stm BBC NEWS | Business | Ryanair to sue government for £3m ] ] Easyjet had to cancel 469 flights, at a cost of about £4 million. [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/5323082.stm BBC NEWS | Business | Security alert cost Easyjet £4m ] ] BAA says the alert cost them £13 million. [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/5338080.stm BBC NEWS | Business | BAA says terror alert cost £13m ] ]

BA is considering making a claim for compensation against BAA, which operates Heathrow, for its failure to provide adequate security services and shortages of personnel during the crisis.Fact|date=February 2007 The Civil Aviation Authority has just commenced its five-yearly review of operation of the airport, and it is likely that BAA's ability to handle the security alert will now become part of that review.cite web|title=Cost to airlines of disruption|publisher=Independent|accessdate=August 15|accessyear=2006|url=http://news.independent.co.uk/business/news/article1219332.ece] Total claim for compensation against BAA has been estimated at £300 million.cite web|title=Cost to airlines of disruption|publisher=The Guardian|accessdate=August 17|accessyear=2006|url=http://www.guardian.co.uk/worldlatest/story/0,,-6016998,00.html]

Air passengers also switched to other means of travel. Sea France ferry company operating from Dover to Calais announced that it had beaten its all-time record for number of passengers carried in one week [ [http://www.seafrance.com/seafrance/opencms/uk/en/passenger/about_us/press/index.html SeaFrance : traversée de la Manche, ferry Calais Douvres - Dover Calais Ferries ] ] , while Eurostar found that at the peak of the alert it was receiving 10 bookings per minute for immediate travel.cite web|title=passengers switching to other means of travel|publisher=Independent|accessdate=August 15|accessyear=2006|url=http://news.independent.co.uk/uk/transport/article1218896.ece]

Other responses

*BAA advised passengers not to travel to Heathrow unless their journey was "essential", and long delays were expected by outbound passengers. [cite web|author=BBC News|title=At a glance, UK airports|publisher=BBC News|accessdate=August 10|accessyear=2006|url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4778771.stm ]
*Houses in and around Walton Drive in High Wycombe, where one house was raided, were evacuated..cite web|author=BBC News|title=Night-time swoops on suspects|publisher=BBC News|accessdate=August 10|accessyear=2006|url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/4779539.stm]
*Virgin Trains accepted plane tickets on its London to Manchester and Cross Country routes.Fact|date=February 2007

See also

* Airport security repercussions due to the September 11, 2001 attacks

References


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