I remember seeing a thread years ago about why a/c don't have have an ignition key or a code or something to start the engines.
Guy got dismissed by people saying things like "That's such a hassle", "Imagine if someone loses the key" and "Unecessary post 9/11"
Wonder if this will change anything. I mean if only the pilots scheduled on that flight have access to the key and take it with them when the engines are turned off at the gate.. that would cut the possibilities of this happening again by a lot.
How do they give the key to the next crew? How does maintenance get the key if they need to run the engines?
Here's a scenario for you: Cpt Chesley and FO Jeffery are in the middle of a tricky landing when suddenly dispatch calls them on the company frequency: "Hey, Jeff, did you remember to hand in the keys for N1234UA to the office before taking off? It's not the first time you know!" Jeff: "Sorry, but we're in the middle of something here, can I get back to you?" Dispatch: "Get back, that's exactly my point, you need to land that piece of junk you pretend to fly and do it now!" Jeff: "Ahh, as a matter of fact, that's what we're doing, so if I can call you..." Dispatch: "You call me the second you get on the ground!!!" Jeff: "Well, we sort of just, what do you say... landed, soo, ehrm, it's gonna take a while to get to land" Dispatch:"...say again, you said you landed, but it's gonna take a while ... if you landed you just catch a crew bus ASAP and bring me the keys!" Jeff: "Yeah, the boats are coming, so I guess I'll be there in a while...".
32andbelow, surely you've heard of electronic key tags, right? Each employee in the airline and related contractors could have one and each tag has a specific set of functions that are authorized. There are intricate systems where tags themselves remember updates and refreshes offline card readers with new data if needed, like when a specific tag is revoked or one tags permissions are changed. This would have to be a very reliable system of course, but with the quality of avionics, I doubt that it would be much of a problem. It could be as simple as just controlling the initial power up of critical systems and when powered on, those systems wouldn't need the tag any more. Surely there are technical solutions to this if that's the way airlines would like to go, but the problem would be the cost as always.