Anyone who flew into Vancouver during the 2010 Olympics experienced security procedures and protocols never before practiced in Canadian general aviation. Will the corporate traveler be exposed to this extreme level of scrutiny in the future? No, however, enhanced security and screening for general aviation travelers is defiantly s on the horizon. The questions are; who will be affected, to what extent and how obtrusive will the experience be.
At the request of specific clients, some charter companies have employed private security firms to implement screening procedures that are familiar to seasoned air travelers. Transparency and intimidation is the key to its effectiveness. Approaching the stainless steel infrastructure manned by uniformed personal sends a very powerful message, deterring most travelers from attempting to smuggle known contraband or security sensitive articles on board the aircraft.
While both passengers and baggage are systemically screened the infrastructure remains fluid and flexible to meet the specific needs of the client. By dialing up or down the sensitivity scale, forward thinking charter companies are able to deliver due diligence and peace of mind to their corporate clients. Anyone traveling on company business is subject to the same scrutiny Daunting to some this stainless steel apparatus is viewed as a positive step forward by corporate decision makers who will opt to take advantage of the service when choosing a charter company to transport their staff to and from the workplace airfields.
This process is extremely effective when transporting thousands of faceless passengers per week to the oil patch or mining site but, what about the senior executives traveling in their person Hawker 4,000 security is equally important here however a slightly different approach must be observed. Here we as aviation professionals must be vigilant and take on a greater role ensuring the safety and security of our passengers.
The flight crew is responsible for maintaining a heightened sense of Situational regarding any abnormal or suspicious circumstances. At MBE Jet we amended our Operations manual to reflect a heightened sense of awareness to the potential threat that is present all around us. As owners of the aircraft the same individuals are traveling with us on a regular basis. Positive control of our guests and their luggage is key in maintaining a vigilant watch for any suspicious activity at the FBO is it at home base or on the road. Should any of our clients invite a guest unfamiliar to our operation positive identification and confirmation of documents is a must.