UK air cargo security rules under review
London, November 1, 2010
British Home Secretary Theresa May said security around all international air cargo arriving in Britain was being reviewed after a bomb sent from Yemen was found aboard an aircraft at a regional airport.
But, acknowledging the massive economic and financial implications of much tighter international air cargo security rules, May stopped short of saying a much more rigorous system of checks was being planned either unilaterally or globally.
"We are looking at the screening of freight. We will be looking at the processes we use. We'll be talking with the (aviation) industry about these issues," she told BBC television.
"I think crucially ... we did yesterday act, we did direct the industry that they should not be accepting freight originating from the Yemen, bringing it into the UK, or, crucially, transiting through the UK."
Asked if much tighter laws governing air freight security are being considered at airports around the world she said she could not talk about specific action.
Prime Minister David Cameron said on Saturday the bomb sent from Yemen and found on a US-bound flight at East Midlands Airport was designed to blow an aircraft out of the sky -- possibly over Britain.
United Parcel Service, whose cargo plane was found to have carried the device, could not immediately be reached for comment on implications for its global business.
The British pilots' union Balpa said the focus on passenger security had left the "door open" for attacks on cargo flights. It said pilots had warned of the industry's vulnerability for years.
Philip Baum, editor of Aviation Security International, told Reuters cargo security was the "Achilles' heel" of air transport.
Private airport operator BAA, which runs the country's biggest airport Heathrow amongst others, said it was awaiting formal instructions from the Department for Transport.
"Any increase in security (cargo and passenger) would come from the government, but to date there have been no changes made to our requirements," a spokeswoman said.
The British International Freight Association (BIFA), which represents all cargo interests, said there should be a review of all aspects of air cargo, but warned against a knee-jerk reaction.
Speaking to the BBC, the director general of BIFA, Peter Quantrill, said: "It would be wrong to suggest that air freight security is not treated in the same way as passengers when it comes to security." - Reuters
More Industry, Logistics & Shipping Stories
- Gulf Marine Services makes muted London debut
- Emal to supply molten aluminium to Ducab unit
- Ducab acquires British cable firm
- Emirates SkyCargo wins top awards
- Bayer opens new coatings, adhesives lab in Dubai
- Chep Aerospace unveils new ULD mobile app
- Cargo summit calls for cut in transit times
- Dubai bus fare cheapest among top cities
- DHL Express boosts Mideast fleet
- DNV to re-certifiy Drydocks World services
- Amphibious boats make global debut in Dubai
- Qatar sets up mixed business incubator
- Non-oil sectors ‘biggest contributors to UAE economy’
- Alba educates customers on best practices
- Spinneys to set up distribution centre at Kizad
- Maritime courses draw more trainees
- Dow to showcase at Dubai coatings expo
- UAE aluminium sector backs Syria refugees
- Asry in big vessel repair milestone
- Flare, Jordan form parent company ‘Aereon’
- Drydocks delivers second MCV for US
- ASIS launches amphibious leisure boat
- Taskforce sought to develop Saudi downstream sector
- DP World launches $200m India project
- RAK 'exploring' ceramics unit stake sale
- Mideast carriers top global air freight growth
- DMCA launches maritime solution apps
- Saudi plans oil-to-chemicals plant at Yanbu
- Sabic gets four bids for JV with Mitsubishi Rayon
- Pentair, IDC launch industrial services JV