FAA Mandate May Pave Way for Video Cameras in Airline Cabins

WASHINGTON

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is considering mandating video surveillance and wireless security devices for all commercial aircraft. The FAA will be taking public comment in the coming weeks before deciding whether to establish the requirements.

Under the security plan announced Sept. 21 by FAA, all commercial aircraft must have a way for the crew to monitor activity in the cockpit, as well as have wireless devices that would allow flight attendants to alert the crew to a potential security threat or emergency.

While the requirement would likely create a new set of video surveillance customers, it doesn’t completely mandate video cameras to be installed in airplane cabins. It would allow airlines the option to use a peephole installed in the cockpit door to monitor the cabin as an alternative to installing cameras.

“The purpose of monitoring is to identify anyone requesting entry to the flight deck and to detect suspicious behavior or potential threats,” FAA said in a press release.

FAA would allow two years to install the cameras or come up with an alternative. The agency estimates the total cost of installing video systems would be $185.5 million over 10 years.

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