Tens of thousands of airline passengers will soon be flying on jets outfitted with anti-missile systems as part of a new government test aimed at thwarting terrorists armed with shoulder-fired projectiles.Who is going to pay for these stupid "protections?" No doubt they'll be free and won't be added to the users.
Three American Airlines Boeing 767-200s that fly daily round-trip routes between New York and California will receive the anti-missile laser jammers this spring, according to the Department of Homeland Security, which is spending $29 million on the tests.
Jets will fly with the jammer device mounted on the belly of the plane, between the wheels. The device works with sensors, also mounted on the plane, that detect a heat-seeking missile and shoot a laser at it to send the missile veering harmlessly off course.
So another threat that hasn't been seen, and another protection that will no doubt never be used.
At least the airline running the tests isn't completely out to lunch.
American Airlines spokesman John Hotard says company officials agreed to participate in the tests in case Congress eventually requires airlines to install the devices.I wonder who has proposed these "protections."
But American is "philosophically opposed" to anti-missile technology on commercial planes, he says. "When you look at the cost benefit, it would be an extremely expensive proposition, and in the end, is it really going to work?"