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Transport Security Expo to highlight need for improved aviation security measures after bombing attempt on Northwest Airlines

Published on 3 March, 2010
Transport Security Expo to probe into areas needed to be improved in aviation security measures
Transport Security Expo is the pre-eminent event in the security calendar this year
Transport security is once again firmly in the spotlight following the Christmas Day attempt to down Northwest Airlines (NWA) flight 253 during its descent into Detroit Metro airport. The incident exposed serious flaws in aviation security which, combined, allowed a known individual with apparent links to Al-Qaeda to board an airliner with an Improvised Explosive Device (IED), which only by good fortune failed to detonate properly.

"The attempted downing of this flight has prompted immediate reviews of aviation security across three continents, which are most likely to result in widespread revision of both procedure and technology," says Peter Jones, Managing Director, Transport Security Expo. "Governments have already signalled increased use of passenger profiling techniques, adoption of whole body imaging and increased use of explosive trace detection as measures to combat this type of attack and more will inevitably follow."

The attempted downing of the flight has prompted immediate reviews of aviation security across three continents

The procedural and systemic failures leading directly to the Northwest Airlines (NWA) flight 253 incident will be examined in detail at the forthcoming Transport Security Expo conference and exhibition, being held on 14 -15 September at London Olympia. Conference will also debate the operational implications in delivering and deploying the above and other measures likely to emerge from the various reviews of aviation security.

"Alleged bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab is now known to have used a device designed to evade standard airport security equipment during his attempt to blow up the airliner in flight. The device consisted of the high explosive Pentaerythritol Tetranitrate (PETN) and a liquid thought by many to be accelerant of some type. The implications for the aviation industry from this form of attack are considered severe and reviews currently underway are expected to consider deployment of other advanced detection techniques," adds Mr. Jones.

Given that liquid is a common denominator between the Christmas Day attack and an earlier thwarted plot to down multiple airliners over the Atlantic Ocean, a liquid detection capability in airports sooner rather than later is expected to be high on the agenda. Transport Security Expo enables delegates and visitors to immerse themselves in the pressing issues now before the aviation industry and a first look at the techniques and technologies available to thwart a future attack by the means described.

Transport Security Expo will also deliver focus on the other major issue of maritime security

"Transport Security Expo will also deliver focus on the other major issue of maritime security. With incidence of piracy on the high seas at an all time high, we have teamed with the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) and the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) to present key conference streams and workshops on this increasingly vital issue. NATO will host tactical presentations informing the merchant community about the issues around piracy, the steps they can take to harden vessels against attack and the different ways the combined taskforces can offer protection on a realistic level," concludes Peter Jones.

With a clear focus directly upon the two primary threat trajectories - aviation and maritime - Transport Security Expo, being held on 14 -15 September 2010 at London's prestigious Olympia Conference & Exhibition Centre, is the pre-eminent event in the security calendar this year.

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