Securing the various zones in an airport

Access safety and security

An airport is certainly a place that poses strategic security issues and these issues have only become more and more acute over the last few years.

With its considerable surface area and continuous flow of travelers from right around the world, securing an airport is both absolutely essential and extremely complex.

4 zones to be monitored

Airports have various types of access points. The location of each access point and its corresponding types of users determine the level of security required.

Considered a public building (ERP in France), airports are also required to meet certain specific standards, particularly in terms of alarm and evacuation systems.

Public zone

The public zone is the zone in which everyone can move about freely, with or without a plane ticket.

Also known as landside, this corresponds to the first area of contact between land and the airport: this also includes spaces such as parking lots, reception areas, shopping areas and check-in desks.

Reserved zone

The reserved zone is only accessible to people carrying a valid plane ticket or boarding pass. The demarcation between the public zone and the reserved zone is easily identifiable within the airport: it is clearly indicated to people accompanying travelers that they cannot proceed beyond the check-in desks.

The reserved zone therefore includes the area housing the security checkpoints, manned by airport security personnel, and the Border Control Point.

Secured reserved zone

The secured reserved zone is the zone stretching beyond the Border Control Point. This includes spaces such as departure gate lounges and duty free shops, as well as various other access points: departure gates, air bridges and runways, emergency exit doors and secure access doors.

These different access points require appropriate locking devices for each type. For example, an access technique reserved entirely for authorized personnel with accreditation is controlled by a key from a management system, or secure access control and locking system. As for more sensitive access points such as those leading to air bridges, these must be permanently secured, except during boarding and disembarkation.

 

Legally controlled security zone

The Legally Controlled Security Zone is the zone with the highest level of security. This zone is only accessible to authorized personnel holding an Airport Accreditation Certificate (AAC). The spaces found in this zone must be reserved for professionals especially as they are to be found exclusively airside: baggage handling and retrieval, and tarmac traffic zones.

Given the security issues posed by airports, as an entry point to national territory and an interface between a national and transnational space, it is obviously essential to choose and maintain an optimal level of security.

Smart security solutions must be preferable, being as they are reliable and adapted to each access point, whilst allowing fluid traffic flows of travelers and staff alike.

 

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