The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced on June 14, 2023, that all new commercial passenger aircraft will be required to have secondary flight deck barriers. The barrier is designed to prevent intruders from entering the flight deck when the access door is open.
“Every day, pilots and flight crews transport millions of Americans safely – and today we are taking another important step to make sure they have the physical protections they deserve,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.
Aircraft manufacturers are required to install secondary barriers on commercial aircraft produced after the rule goes into effect.
“No pilot should have to worry about an intrusion on the flight deck,” said Acting FAA Associate Administrator for Safety David Boulter.
The Biden-Harris Administration made this rule a priority in 2021. In 2022, the FAA proposed the rule after seeking recommendations from aircraft manufacturers and labor partners. The rule meets a requirement of the 2018 FAA Reauthorization Act.
The secondary Barrier
The FAA issued the ruling in response to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, when terrorists were able to hijack four commercial airplanes and crash them into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and a field in Pennsylvania.
In the wake of the attacks, the FAA required that all commercial aircraft be equipped with reinforced cockpit doors. However, the FAA determined that a secondary barrier was necessary to provide an additional layer of security.
The secondary barrier must be made of a sturdy material, such as metal or composite, and it must be at least 54 inches high. The barrier must also be able to be locked from the inside of the cockpit.
The FAA rule will go into effect on January 1, 2025. Aircraft manufacturers will have two years to comply with the rule.
The FAA estimates that the secondary barrier will cost between $100,000 and $200,000 per aircraft. However, the agency believes that the cost is justified by the added security that the barrier will provide.
The FAA ruling requiring a secondary flight deck barrier is a significant step in improving aviation security. The barrier will help to prevent intruders from entering the flight deck and hijacking an airplane. This will help to keep passengers and crew safe and secure.
Benefits of the secondary Flight Deck Barrier
The FAA estimates that the secondary flight deck barrier will prevent up to 10 hijackings per year. The flight deck barrier will also help to protect the flight crew and passengers from harm in the event of a hijacking.
For example, the barrier can help to prevent an intruder from entering the flight deck and harming the flight crew or passengers with a weapon.
The secondary flight deck barrier will also help to improve public confidence in aviation security. The barrier is a visible sign that the FAA is taking steps to improve aviation security. This will help to reassure the public that flying is safe.
The FAA ruling requiring a secondary flight deck barrier is a significant step in improving aviation security. The secondary flight deck barrier will help to prevent hijackings, protect the flight crew and passengers from harm, and improve public confidence in aviation security.
The barrier is a cost-effective way to improve aviation security. The FAA estimates that the barrier will cost between $100,000 and $200,000 per aircraft.
However, the agency believes that the cost is justified by the added security that the barrier will provide.