The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has urged the governments of the US and the UK to immediately look for suitable alternatives to recently announced rules to restrict passengers from placing large electronic devices in their carry-on baggage on certain flights.
The US and the UK governments have restricted certain flights departing from the Middle East and North Africa to carry large electronic items in the aircraft cabins.
IATA director general and CEO Alexandre de Juniac said: “The current measures are not an acceptable long-term solution to whatever threat they are trying to mitigate.
“Even in the short term it is difficult to understand their effectiveness. And the commercial distortions they create are severe. We call on governments to work with the industry to find a way to keep flying secure without separating passengers from their personal electronics.”
In a speech, Juniac stated the importance of maintaining public confidence in the security of the global aviation industry which safely operates an average 100,000 flights each day.
Juniac added: “With the measures now in place, our passengers and member airlines are asking valid questions. Why don’t the US and the UK have a common list of airports?
“How can laptops be secure in the cabin on some flights and not others, including flights departing from the same airport? And surely there must be a way to screen electronic equipment effectively?
“The current situation is not acceptable and will not maintain the all-important confidence of the industry or of travellers. We must find a better way. And governments must act quickly.”
IATA has called for improved information sharing as well as proper coordination on security measures among governments and with the aviation industry.