While this is a startling fact, it’s reality. Airports are literally the gateway to the world, and they post a high risk of intruders of all kinds (ground,vandalism, technology hacking, air, etc.) 24/7/365. Airports never sleep, and neither do the potential intruders.
Surprisingly, 99% of Airport Security is placed on protection of the front of the airport: police at the front door for drop off of passengers, TSA screening, security cameras everywhere, access control on all interior doors, and bomb sniffing dogs. BUT the back door is only protected by a chain link fence and nobody is watching. No security cameras. No security guards, and it is easy to breach a fence by cutting a hole or just running over a section of fence with a vehicle. TSA is looking at an overall perimeter security protection plan and it should include lights to deter intruders at night and allow the cameras to see at night either with white light, infrared (IR lights), or a combination of both.
So, putting all other intrusion threats aside, what are the side effects of an airport perimeter breach besides the obvious fence-line encroachment? Here are some potential consequences to think about:
- Intruder having direct access to planes on the runway taxiing or ready to take off
- General loss of property through theft
- General loss of property through destruction
- Perimeter fence and other security system damage and destruction
- Flight delays
- Flight cancellations
- Aircraft sabotage
- Security lockdown airport-wide—temporary or longer-term
- Negative economic ramifications:
- Airport staff
- Service providers—both within and without airport terminals
- Airlines overall
- Airline staff
- Cargo shipments
- Local community
Protecting an airport and all it encompasses can definitely be more difficult than with other smaller-scale businesses. Airports and their perimeters cover massive areas, taking the necessary security solutions to a whole new level:
- Airport property perimeters, alone, can literally be miles long, making the number of potential entrance points seemingly endless.
- Within those perimeter fences, there are many moving objects, making it more difficult to monitor both legit and potentially criminal activities.
- Vibrations from jets and the multitude of multi-colored lights—many constantly shifting and moving—can be problematic for cameras and sensors, especially fence-mounted systems.
- With the expansive property and potential for issues, it’s difficult for security personnel to patrol everything all the time.
- Besides perimeter threats, airports deal with ground and air threats, including drones, so security systems must have the capability to cover all potential threats.
Pole lighting is good for the parking lots, but due to the high cost with high voltage lights, it is not practical nor has it been deployed as a standard for airports. The solution is using low voltage low cost lights mounted directly to the fence infrastructure,when faced with securing miles upon miles of perimeter fencing.
While securing an airport perimeter seems daunting, it’s completely doable. Here’s how CAST Advanced Perimeter Security Solutions can help protect airport perimeters, serving as a crucial deterrent to would-be intruders:
- Delivers the right levels of evenly dispersed light in the right areas to deter intruders so you won’t have shadow or dark spaces, bringing trespassers into the light.
- Turn cameras from black and white to color at night providing a much better camera image.
- Integrates beautifully with other components of your security system including intrusion detection systems,cameras, personnel, license plate readers, infrared scanners, radar, and more.
- Enables your security system to differentiate between intruders and wildlife, the latter of which can be common on vast airport properties.
- Helps keep intruders off airport property while keeping criminals from leaving the property since the entire perimeter is more secure.
- Works for not only fences, but for walls, gates, vehicle entrances (both monitored and unmonitored)—basically, all possible entry points.
- Lower ongoing energy costs over other systems due to our fixture design and LED technology.
Lastly, incorporating our CAST FlashGlare technology throughout an airport property can offer a significant level of protection against intrusion and the accompanying consequences. Here’s why we think FlashGlare is the optimal option for airport perimeter security:
- When triggered, CAST FlashGlare lighting initiates a repeating cycle of on and off lights every 10 seconds for 1-2 minutes, confusing the chemicals in the trespasser’s eyes, effectively blinding them.
- It can then take anywhere from 15 second to 2 minutes for their eyes to adapt and reset to the continuing darkness and light, so these repeating cycles create not only a high level of discomfort for the eyes—including stars and splotches, but some queasiness is also possible. These discomforts not only disorient the intruder, but also cause them to change their focus from intrusion to escape—as quickly as possible.
- While the intruder's effort to escape is delayed, our technology allows time for authorities to be contacted, increasing the chance of apprehending the criminals.
- FlashGlare also uses LED technology , saving valuable dollars for years to come, which is another reason to incorporate this technology for airport security.
Airport security is crucial both to the front of the airport and the back of the airport, because breaches are the reality, there are decisive steps that can be taken to not only prevent intrusions, but also minimize their consequences if and when they do occur. Contact us for more information on upping your airport security and protection game or for any other lighting needs.