skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 200538 Find in a Library
Title: Designing Airports for Security: An Analysis of Proposed Changes at LAX
Author(s): Terry L. Schell; Brian G. Chow; Clifford Grammich
Corporate Author: Rand Corporation
United States of America
Date Published: 2003
Page Count: 8
Sponsoring Agency: Rand Corporation
Santa Monica, CA 90407-2138
Sale Source: Rand Corporation
1776 Main Street
P.O. Box 2138
Santa Monica, CA 90407-2138
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Document (Online)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This paper analyzes airport security as a function of airport design with specific focus on an analysis and proposed changes at the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).
Abstract: This analysis conducted by RAND examines the relative security merits of the Los Angeles International Airport’s (LAX) Alternative D-Safety and Security which includes more features for the security of airport workers and passengers. It examines how features of Alternative D compare with current airport configuration in improving the security of airport workers and passengers against terrorist attacks. Alternative D raises two general issues for consideration in improving LAX security: (1) the net effect on security of any physical change to the airport and (2) the effect of limiting airport capacity to 78 million annual passengers, close to the current configuration of 79 million. This analysis considers the impact of reconfiguring airport facilities in helping prior detection or deterrence and ultimate limitation of casualties and operational disruption for several types of attacks. A common characteristic of both the current configuration and Alternative D that may have a great effect on airport security is the limit on capacity, with both limiting capacity to less than 80 million passengers per year. Three broad areas of change are presented to help improve security for both the current configuration and Alternative D reconfiguration: (1) expedite the movement of passengers into the secure terminal areas; (2) harden high-value structures or structural modifications; and (3) use of physical barriers. The top priority when considering security in airport planning should be given to securing the aircraft. Regardless of configuration, several improvements in airport processes could be made to improve security against terrorist attacks at LAX. However, terrorism is dynamic and terrorists adapt their methods to suit changes in weaponry and defense tactics. Terrorism prevention and security must also be dynamic.
Main Term(s): Airport security
Index Term(s): Aircraft; Aircraft hijacking; Aircraft security; Facility security; National security; Security; Security standards; Terrorism/Mass Violence; Terrorist detention
Note: Rand Issue Paper, Public Safety and Justice; downloaded on May 28, 2003.
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.