JetBlue Airlines adds bulletproof Kevlar backing and titanium locks to strengthen cockpit doors in their aircraft as an anti-terrorism measure, in the weeks after the terror attacks on September 11, 2001.
Post-9/11: Airline Adds Kevlar, Titanium Locks, to Strengthen Cockpit Doors
MATT LAUER, co-host:
Since the September 11th terrorist attacks, we've already seen some technological changes in our everyday lives. Some have been on the drawing board long before the attack; others are in use today as a direct result of it. David Neeleman is the CEO of JetBlue Airways. he's in one of his company's new planes. David, good morning to you.
DAVID NEELEMAN (CEO, JetBlue Airways): Good morning, Matt. How are you?
LAUER: I'm fine, thanks. First of all, before we talk about technology, how is your airline doing in the wake of the reduction in air travel?
NEELEMAN: Well, we're doing fine. Obviously, there was a difficult time right after, but I think passengers are coming back and flying. And you know, we're instilling a lot of confidence with a lot of the things that we're doing, and passengers are, you know passengers are realizing it's--it's not as bad as they thought, being out here with the lines and stuff.
LAUER: The FAA ordered airlines to strengthen cockpit doors. What--what have you done? How have you used technology do that?
NEELEMAN: Well, let me show you. We've just installed on a couple of our airplanes these new doors that have a couple of interesting components. First of all, we have these new titanium locks; there's four of them on each door. And then most importantly we have this new Kevlar backing on the back of our doors. It's a bulletproof, anti-ballistic
substance which does a couple of things: number one, it's obviously bulletproof; but second of all, it stiffens the door dramatically, so when this door is shut, and the titanium locks are in place, it can withstand many, many thousand pounds of pressure, and this door--no one's going to come through this door. These doors will all be installed by the end of the month.
LAUER: All right.
NEELEMAN: So, I mean, I--passengers demand, you know, these kinds of changes, and we're committed to making sure they happen.
LAUER: David Neeleman. David, thanks very much. We appreciate it.
NEELEMAN: OK, thanks, Matt.
On September 11, 2001, 19 militants hijacked four airliners and carried out suicide attacks in the United States. Two of the planes were flown into the towers of the World Trade Center in New York City. A third plane hit the Pentagon just outside Washington, D.C. A fourth plane crashed in a field in Pennsylvania. Nearly 3,000 people were killed during the attacks, including more than 400 police officers and firefighters. Often referred to as 9/11, the attacks triggered major U.S. initiatives to combat terrorism and defined the presidency of George W. Bush.