Aviation security: common rules in the field of civil aviation security
Community security measures comprising a range of checks help to guarantee civil aviation security and restore confidence after the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001.
Following the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001, the Commission has stepped up all aviation security standards. In particular, this Regulation makes the security measures laid down by the European Civil Aviation Conference (ECAC) compulsory within the European Union (EU).
These provisions establish a system of unannounced inspections, introduce more rigorous screening of passengers, luggage and staff, and require Member States to introduce national security programmes and common standards for equipment.
Each Member State must adopt a national civil aviation security programme in order to ensure that common standards are applied. They must also designate a competent authority to be responsible for coordinating and monitoring the implementation of its national quality control programme. That authority may also adopt national security measures applicable to small airports.
The Commission, in cooperation with the competent authority, may conduct unannounced inspections to monitor the application of this Regulation at airports. It sends the inspection report to the Member State concerned. The Member State has three months to remedy any shortcomings.
Furthermore, the Commission, assisted by the Security Committee, should work together with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and ECAC to examine the possibility of developing a mechanism to assess whether flights coming from third-country airports meet the security requirements.
The Regulation provides for the strict application of airport access controls (permanent access controls and background checks on authorised staff) and checks to be carried out on passengers, baggage (cabin and hold) and members of staff, including the crew and their baggage.
These are screened before being allowed into security-restricted areas (areas requiring an access badge). One year after the entry into force of the Regulation, these checks became compulsory in certain ‘critical parts’ of these areas, for example aircraft access areas.
These ‘critical parts’ are to be gradually harmonised throughout the Community within five years of their being adopted by the Commission.
The Annexes to the Regulation set out security measures concerning:
- airport security;
- aircraft security;
- passengers and cabin baggage;
- hold baggage;
- cargo, courier and express parcels, mail and air carrier materials.
|Act||Entry into force||Deadline for transposition in the Member States||Official Journal|
|Regulation (EC) No 2320/2002 [adoption: COD/2001/0234]||19.1.2003||-||OJ L 355 of 30.12.2002|
|Amending act(s)||Entry into force||Deadline for transposition in the Member States||Official Journal|
|Regulation (EC) No 849/2004 [adoption: COD/2003/0222]||20.5.2004||-||OJ L 229 of 29.6.2004|