jetfuel
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Plane Spotters On Terror Watch

Mon May 30, 2005 10:25 pm

News story here about plane spotters to fight terrorism
Where's the passion gone out of the airline industry? The smell of jetfuel and the romance of taking a flight....
 
cbphoto
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RE: Plane Spotters On Terror Watch

Mon May 30, 2005 10:33 pm

Very good, it's about time our hobby is being recognized somewhere in the world. I agree 100% that we are probably one of the best defense lines when it comes to spotting unusual behavior. Lets hope other countries join in!
ETOPS: Engines Turning or Passengers Swimming
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: Plane Spotters On Terror Watch

Mon May 30, 2005 10:50 pm

It's about time. Perhaps the US will follow suit . . . I could imagine most spotters would immediately notice something out of place quicker than Tommy Tentpeg driving down an airport perimeter road.

The US already actively encourages long haul truck drivers to report unusual circumstances.

Seems they could have many, many more sets of eyes using Plane and Train Spotters as well . . . perhaps there is something to this A-Net ID Card mentioned in another thread.
FOR THOSE THAT FOUGHT FOR IT, FREEDOM HAS A FLAVOR THE PROTECTED WILL NEVER KNOW OR UNDERSTAND
 
kaitak
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RE: Plane Spotters On Terror Watch

Tue May 31, 2005 5:49 am

Well done guys; this can only help. Although I can''t claim to know a great deal about airport security, one of the key aspects of a successful organisation is to understand how they think; there needs to be mutual understanding. One you know where they are coming from and they know what you want, then there''s a basis for moving forward. That involves respect on both sides. They respect you and you respect their concerns. I think this is a wonderful example to enthusiasts right through the world and I hope it''s adopted by other countries and other groups of spotters, particularly in the UK. At the end of the day, security resources are always limited.

By now, the more intelligent aviation security specialist - looking at the tens of thousands of photos from places like EWR, BOS, ORD (i.e. places where photography is discouraged) - here, on Jetphotos, on Myaviation and other photo sites - will know that (a) their efforts to discourage photography have been useless, but moreover, (b) not one single photo has caused a security problem. They have the choice to work with or against; working against will distract attention from the key issues. Working with, as proven by places like LHR and MEL, adds another very useful ally in the fight against terrorism. Whether we''re enthusiasts or travellers (and most of us are both), that helps everyone.

I visited MEL in 2001, before 9/11 and it was a great airport. I hope to include it in travel plans in future and I hope that it might be possible to introduce some scheme to register spotters from abroad during their stay. I, for one, would be only to happy to introduce myself to the airport police and provide references or any other comfort they might wish, if it made things easier for them - and me.
 
ChiGB1973
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RE: Plane Spotters On Terror Watch

Tue May 31, 2005 5:56 am

Yeah, just a few weeks ago, Rosemont, IL Police made me and 2 others leave from beside a public roadway, saying no watching or pictures of the planes.

I didn't think it right, but I prefer not to question the man that could put me in jail.

There are other places to spot at O'Hare, but I thought it was a bit uncalled for.

Good luck to the Jetspotters. What an awesome opportunity!

M
 
Aleksandar
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RE: Plane Spotters On Terror Watch

Tue May 31, 2005 8:19 am

Quoting ChiGB1973 (Reply 4):
Yeah, just a few weeks ago, Rosemont, IL Police made me and 2 others leave from beside a public roadway, saying no watching or pictures of the planes.

Imagine what could have really happened while they were intimidating you, guys. I guess it took few minutes for the cops to get to you, another few for discussion and few more to get back, which means that some maniac could have done so many horrifying things during those, let's say ten minutes.

Few years ago, after 9/11 I suggested to spotters on Yahoo mailing list to try to co-operate with authorities and an idea came to my mind, but was refused by so many others. I'm glad that it is changing, because spotters can be extremely helpful to police and, above all, I am absolutely sure that nobody among us would even think of doing something that could make problems at the airport.

So, can we all do more on international level? In those days of Internet and Airliners.net, we should not be organized on local levels. By saying that, there are countries were taking photos is discouraged by the police and we could all use experience of more liberal countries.

Aleksandar
R-E-S-P-E-C-T
 
AJRfromSYR
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RE: Plane Spotters On Terror Watch

Tue May 31, 2005 7:44 pm

You guys forget that just because you know who you are doesn't mean the cops do. It is annoying to get hassled but I believe its good that the suspicion level is still high, when we start to forget and become more relaxed that's when trouble happens.
-AJR-
 
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Starlionblue
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RE: Plane Spotters On Terror Watch

Tue May 31, 2005 9:43 pm

Quoting AJRfromSYR (Reply 6):
You guys forget that just because you know who you are doesn't mean the cops do. It is annoying to get hassled but I believe its good that the suspicion level is still high, when we start to forget and become more relaxed that's when trouble happens.

Agreed about the vigilance level, but do you really think hassling people who watch planes will increase security? How about putting some effort into making pax and cargo screening better instead?
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
miamix707
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RE: Plane Spotters On Terror Watch

Wed Jun 01, 2005 1:10 am

Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 7):
Agreed about the vigilance level, but do you really think hassling people who watch planes will increase security? How about putting some effort into making pax and cargo screening better instead?

You are correct. I'm not saying airport perimeters shoudln't be watched, but kicking people out after having police, airport personnel, etc ask stupid a$$ questions after "discovering" they're watching planes is not so much sad as it's absurd. They should know they can't stop terrorism this way or prevent anything, why be so mean to ppl who are just watching planes?? If anything that only proves the terrorists got what they wanted, without moving a finger.

Will be a while before some of the more unfriendly airports in the U.S. (supposedly still the "land of the free") such as EWR, MCO etc, start to use aviation fans for perimeter security or even start to treat them nice...  Wink Imagine how much money could be saved?? Ah forget that. Not enough common sense or flexible attitude to want to consider it.
 
trvyyz
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RE: Plane Spotters On Terror Watch

Wed Jun 01, 2005 1:26 am

We too have an airport Watch group in Toronto. We have a Jacket and cap to identify and also an ID card. All the info of the Group are accesible to the GTAA and Police. We also have emergency numbers to alert the Airport in case of any suspcious activity.


Members in Action


 
Coronado990
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RE: Plane Spotters On Terror Watch

Wed Jun 01, 2005 2:29 am

Quoting AJRfromSYR (Reply 6):
You guys forget that just because you know who you are doesn't mean the cops do. It is annoying to get hassled but I believe its good that the suspicion level is still high, when we start to forget and become more relaxed that's when trouble happens.

Many spotters come from out-of-town. The real trouble starts when plane spotters start snitching on other plane spotters! What do you look for, someone with a camera, radio and binoculars? A Rocket launcher? What the heck do you look for? I don't even think the cops know.

A real terrorist would be able to afford a house or an apartment close to the airport and just blend in if it was that important to them. Maybe they should question everyone who moves in within a 2 mile radius of the airport and have them register with the local authorities. My point is if you want to register plane spotters, you have to register EVERYONE! Where do you stop?
Uncle SAN at your service!
 
Bluewave 707
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RE: Plane Spotters On Terror Watch

Wed Jun 01, 2005 2:51 am

What most law enforcement agencies here in the US fail to realize that the regular spotters are extra eyes and ears for them. I, for one, also keep an eye out for anything irregular @ HNL whenever I'm out there spotting and taking photos. We mean no harm to anyone, and I'm sure whether its airport police, or private security or TSA, appreciate any kind of help.
"The best use of your life will be to so live your life, that the use of your life will outlive your life" -- D Severn
 
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Starlionblue
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RE: Plane Spotters On Terror Watch

Wed Jun 01, 2005 3:43 am

Quoting Coronado990 (Reply 10):
What do you look for, someone with a camera, radio and binoculars?

Well, the local spotters can go and say hi.

Quoting Coronado990 (Reply 10):
A Rocket launcher?

Well, as long as they don't mount it...  Wink


Seriously, as has been said, it's easier to rent a place close to the airport and get a great view for intel/dirty deeds than hanging around the fence.

Quoting Coronado990 (Reply 10):
My point is if you want to register plane spotters, you have to register EVERYONE! Where do you stop?

Good point. But there are many steps between doing nothing and registration. The police just hanging out with the spotters for 20 minutes every day, getting to know them and so on, goes a long way and doesn't involve registration.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo