Re: Can you lock an airliner?

Date:         27 Aug 99 14:03:45 
From:         "john r." <>
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In article <airliners.1999.892@ohare.Chicago.COM>, Stephen H. Westin writes
>Here's a stupid question: do airliners have the equivalent of an
>ignition key? What about door keys? Locking an airplane might be
>useful as an additional line of defense beyond airport fences, guards,
>etc. Especially when planes are stored for a significant period of
>time. Not that anyone is likely to sneak off with, say, a 747 from LAX
>in the middle of the night, but one would like to guard against
>vandalism, pilferage, and sabotage. I recall an incident some years
>back where some mischievous folks videotaped themselves inside a BA
>747 late one nigth at the off-heathrow maintenance facility.

The answer is no. There is no onboard security system.

I guess you could say we rely on the external security system, which at
Heathrow is getting ever more pervasive.

Planes have been stolen. When my friend worked for the now defunct East
African Airways at Nairobi they had a crew ring in from Mombassa wanting
to know where their plane was. A revolutionary group had pinched it to
invade Uganda from Tanzania but their pilot was inept and crash landed
it at Kilimanjaro where it was found sitting sideways on the runway. A
cause of great hilarity locally.

Also a few planes have been quietly repossessed by creditors.

>But then imagine the chaos when someone locks the keys inside...


john r.