Airports face a number of challenges when it comes to their perimeter and internal airport fencing requirements. Between 2004 and 2016 alone, 345 known perimeter security breaches happened across the United States of America at 31 airports. Whilst none of the incidents were terror-related the general view has been that active detection and surveillance allows a response time to capture the intruder before they can achieve any real damage to themselves or the estate and assets.
Sadly however, this isn’t the truth in many high-profile cases. In March 2016, Louis Pedro Verdasca dos Santos Costa, a 38-year-old Portuguese national broke through an airport security fence at Heathrow airport and locked himself inside an empty British Airways 747 passenger jet’s cockpit. Whilst in September of the same year, 9 protesters gained access to London City airport at 5:40am BST and proceeded to erect a tripod and “lock themselves together” on the main runway.
In both of these cases, and countless others; the security surveillance and detection procedures and systems eventually located the breach. However, it was too late to stop the intruders committing an act that induced high delay times and costs for the airport and a knock-on effect on the travelling passengers.
From accessing active runways through to threatening member of staff with weapons, it is apparent that the failure of the first line of defence is allowing groups and individuals the ability to cause disruption and delay. Current assessments place an airport perimeter breach occurring every 10 days across the USA.
It has never been more important to make sure that your airport fencing is of the highest standard to offer a guaranteed delay against attack both internally and externally.