United States Sets Deadline for Foreign Airlines to Meet Flight Deck Door Standards

WASHINGTON - U.S. Transportation
Secretary Norman Y. Mineta today
announced that foreign airlines must
install new flight deck doors on
aircraft serving the United States by
April 9, 2003. Foreign airlines must
also install temporary locking devices
within 60 days of publication of the
rule in the Federal Register.

On Jan. 15, the Federal Aviation
Administration (FAA) published new
standards for flight decks doors to
protect airline and cargo crews from
intrusion and small arms fire or
fragmentation devices, such as
grenades. More than 6,000 U.S.
airplanes will have new doors installed
by April 9, 2003. The major U.S.
airlines voluntarily installed near-
term modifications to reinforce doors
soon after Sept. 11, 2001.

“President Bush and I remain committed
to a safe and secure aviation system
that will encourage Americans to
travel,” said Secretary
Mineta. “Assuring the security of the
flight crew is critical not only for
the safety of American passengers but
for international travelers as well.”

The International Civil Aviation
Organization (ICAO) recently said that
its 187 member- countries would install
doors that meet security standards
similar to those adopted by the FAA but
not until November 2003, seven months
after the FAA deadline. There is no
ICAO requirement for near-term fixes to
flight deck doors.

“Many foreign airlines have already
reinforced their doors,” said FAA
Administrator Jane F. Garvey “The FAA
will continue working with foreign
aviation authorities around the world
to keep passengers and crew as safe as


Beginning on Oct. 9, the FAA issued a
series of regulations that allowed near-
term door reinforcement to be carried
out as soon as possible by providing
airlines and cargo operators with
temporary regulatory relief. The FAA
understands that many foreign
governments are prepared to grant
similar temporary relief from their
corresponding standards.

The FAA estimates that 1,921 foreign
airplanes will need to be retrofitted.
There are a number of doors that meet
or exceed the requirements of this
rule. Depending on which door is
chosen, the cost of this rule will
range from a low of approximately $40.9
million to a high of $80.2 million.

The FAA’s final rule is available at
www.faa.gov/avr/arm/nprm.cfm and will
be published in the Federal Register.