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Subject: Full body scanners for Aussie airports
BLUIE006    2/14/2010 1:52:44 AM
"Travelers are facing full body scans, increased security and more expensive flights with the government announcing a $200 million plan to boost airport defence against terrorists" (Veness, 2010.The West Australian) While I am all for increased security at airports, I wonder if these expensive X-Rays are the best use of those funds (200 million)? The reason I say this is; has any aircraft departing internationally from Australian soil in the last 10 years actually been victim of a serious hijacking attempt? I’m not talking about drunken crackpots that try hijacking the plane with a spoon and two dry biscuits, I talking about serious well planned para-military hijacking attempts. The Trans Australia Airlines in the 60’s, and some disgruntled Qantas passengers in recent times spring to mind, but nothing coordinated. “There have been no fatalities from hijacking of Australian aircraft” (Stewart & Mueller) I suggest that it is more likely that an aircraft coming to Australia is much more likely to be hijacked, and having traveled through Asia recently, I know that in certain places the airport security leaves a lot to be desired. Thus it stands to reason that an Australian led push and monetary assistance to increase Airport security standards within the region, sky marshals (ASO)on all inbound flights, additional overseas HUMINT assets, and better training/screening for airport staff will have a greater “real world” effect on the security of Australian’s than X-Rays at Aussie airports. All I’m saying is, has an in depth “cost-benefit assessment” been done and compared to other security improvements? Or do you think that the Labour government wants some high tech shinny border security toys in the lead up to an election? Does anyone have opinions on this?
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DropBear       2/14/2010 9:54:02 PM
The thing I find alarming is that all the bells and whistles are at our major domestic/international ports, however, almost no security exists at hundreds of regional airports/airfields.
I went on a day business trip from Brissy to a regional town in Qld and was told to take my shoes off and do the whole wand scan thing. Fair enough. Thing is, when I got back on the return flight later that day at the poky little regional field, I strolled up to the departure point (not even a physical gate) and flashed my pass at the attendant. Strolled out to the plane (props turning) without even being escorted across the apron (wonder how many people walk too close to the engines?) and then onto the flight.
Now this is the catch. Suppose I was a nutter and wanted to blow somebody/thing up? I would be more likely to want to target a capital city than a two bit, one horse town hundreds of miles from anywhere. All the security was out of Brissy but nobody checked me coming into the city from the outback. I came from a rural area where I could have had ammonium nitrate packed in a bag and no one would have been the wiser.
Obviously, we can't secure every single small township airfield across Oz, however, it struck me as amusing that it would be so easy to do harm starting from any number of isolated communities.
As to the x-ray malarky, well if it helps then why not. I'm not phased if somebody sees my family jewels on a screen for a few seconds. If the operators were pervs then a few seconds searching on google when they get home would satisfy them more I would think.
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gf0012-aust       2/15/2010 1:48:54 AM
I've walked onto an airfield with my AOPA Crew Pass and not been challenged at all...

cref dropbears comments.

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