UK aviation security expert calls for increased passenger dialogue

Industry experts and thought leaders in the field of security addressed key issues currently affecting the aviation sector on day one of the Dubai Airshow as it kicked off its 2015 edition with a conference dedicated to safety and security.
The Airport Safety & Security Conference, one of the new conferences added to the Dubai Airshow for 2015 covered a diverse agenda covering standardization requirements, challenges in cargo and logistics, cyber terrorism and regulatory frameworks.
Peter Kirk, Deputy Director and Head of Aviation Security, UK Civil Aviation Authority, led a thought-provoking session on the evolution of aviation security regulation, at which he called for increased transparency and dialogue with the general public.
He explained: “Passengers pass through our airports, they board their flights, and as they do so they are targeted by security messages of all kinds about the need to report unaccompanied bags, what they can and can’t take into the passenger cabin etc. Are we partnering with the public as effectively as we might in the security sphere, and can we draw them too into the security culture?”
He argued that the industry is focused on telling passengers what it wants them to do, but less forthcoming when explaining why. This also raised the issue of industry intelligence. “Ideally we would want them to comply with security features because they believe and understand how those procedures make them and their fellow passengers safer, not just because they are rather tiresome measures that they feel they have to put up with.”
Michele van Akelijen, Managing Director of Dubai Airshow organisers F&E Aerospace, added. “The addition of the Airport Safety and Security Conference is one of the new additions to the Dubai Airshow for 2015, increasing its representation of all aspects of the aerospace industry.” She continued, “It is fantastic to see how much value it has added to the show for all its attendees.”