73-year-old airline, El Al Israel, is considered to be one of the world’s safest airlines. Despite being the target of many terrorist attacks, only one El Al flight has ever been hijacked, resulting in no fatalities. Through this article, you will find out how El Al Israel stays secure and how their airport hub in Tel Aviv plays a huge role in it.
At the Airport:
Here are the strict measures at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport:
Preliminary Security Checks:
All vehicles entering Ben Gurion Airport will need to have a preliminary security check before even entering the compound. Armed officers will then do a thorough search of said vehicle and have a little chat with the people entering the airport. Those who look nervous or suspicious will be sent for further screening. All passengers will be questioned before heading to the check-in desk and cameras are turned on all around the airport the whole day.
Colour-coded baggage system:
Until a few years ago, there was a rather interesting colour-coded baggage system at Ben Gurion airport but was later suspended due to complaints of discrimination. Based on the interview given before reaching the check-in desks, security will do a risk assessment and give a colour code to each passenger. The colour given to each passenger will determine how strong security check the passenger needs.
Extreme Baggage Screening:
After check-in, all passengers will have to go through a baggage screening. Baggage will be screened using CT scanners and X-Ray machines. It will then be placed in a pressure chamber that will detonate any bombs or explosives in the baggage. Boarding passes will also be re-checked once again before the passenger is clear to the departure gate.
Onboard the Aircraft:
Here are the strict security measures onboard El Al aircraft:
In-built Missile Defense System:
El Al is the only airline in the world to contain an in-built missile system, known as Flight Guard. Since the early 2000s, this system has been installed on most aircraft, to defend against anti-aircraft missiles. A few years later in 2014, the airline used an updated system, which includes the Missle Approach Warning System (MAWS), to detect a missile at the early stages of an attack.
Undercover Agents & Extra Protection
On every El Al flight, undercover agents will be seated among the passengers, armed with concealed firearms. These agents are indistinguishable as they are dressed like tourists. In addition, the cockpit doors on the aircraft are extra protected, with a double door interlock system. Reinforced steel floors are also built in to block passengers in the cabin to break through to the baggage compartment.
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