Back to Squawk list
  • 71

Plane spotters boost airport security in Montreal

Montreal airport recognizes the fact that plane spotters improve airport security. ( More...

Sort type: [Top] [Newest]

s2v8377 20
I wish the idiots at the Port Atrocity of of NY & NJ would read this article for JFK, LGA, and EWR!!! However, with that said I am assuming they are capable of reading!!!
Ric Wernicke 19
Usually when any authority does not want to be photographed, it is because they will be photographed doing something they should not be doing.
kingshootr 3
Ditto PHX Sky Harbor - Very few places to spot from anymore, yet even outside the fence they still run us off every time.
eLaReF 3
I visited Sky Harbour in Jan 14 & Jan 15 as part of two trips with Globemaster Tours
We used the roof-top car-park (No.3??) to spot from for a whole morning in both cases and Obama was even due on the 2nd trip.
But no-one came near us to chase us away, or enquire what we were up to. This has made me realise I haven't uploaded the '15 trip to Flickr, but this album shows the sort of view we got
Leo de Haan 2
Great pictures.

[This comment has been downvoted. Show anyway.]

Roy Hunte 11
The world needs to realise this.
Daniel Dunphy 1
Roy Troughton 6
ORD has an active airport watch group which includes a large group of local enthusiasts who work together with the local authorities. Each member has a background check before being accepted and are provided with identification. They have regular meetings and representatives from the local authorities also attend. A member of the group told me the Police from the communities that surround ORD have reported a drop in the crime since the group was formed. Instead of wasting their time chasing off enthusiast's ORD has found a way to work with them.
A few additional pairs of well meaning 'eyes' are always welcome, that too if they are acting pro bono !
Steve Oravets 3
The PA of NY/NJ cops behave like a bunch of overpaid bully's. It make you wonder what a foreign tourist must think of the USA when arrive in the USA. As they wait to be picked-up outside they are treated to PA Cops screaming hysterically at drivers and passengers alike. Welcome to Amerika!
Kevin Haiduk 3
KSAT Allows spotting from the top of the long term garage. Good on them!
randomguy 2
Minneapolis is pretty spotting friendly. There's a viewing area by the Cargo terminal (outside security). There's an observation deck airside. And south of the airport are a couple of hotels right off the end of the runway that you can just sit in your car as well.
eLaReF 2
Quite a few UK airfields including RAF Coningsby (Typhoons) and Glasgow Airport operate a scheme whereby you register your self and car, so you won't get bothered and undertake to report anything you see that you consider suspicious.
Remembering a very pleasant visit to Sky Harbor back in '77. One could wander out on the covered, but windowless walkway areas and get great shots of everything. Wish I could find something similar at SEA, especially now that I'm in a wheelchair. I can, however, spend a day at BFI in front of the Museum of Flight and get a nice variety of GA, bizjets, Boeing test flights, and the occasional military transit. I'd be happy to join such a watch group.
Brian Rose 2
Bedfordshire Police in conjuction with Luton Airport(EGGW) in the UK used to issue an identity card to spotters, not sure if the scheme is still in operation though. I still carry mine when visiting there.
Dave Nosek 2
One of my biggest joys as a kid was walking up to our local airport (AVP) and just spending a few hours watching airplanes land and take off. No formal organization was needed. kudos to Montreal for making it an enjoyable experience for kids and adults alike. More airports need to do this rather than the constant paranoia that seems to be involved in anything that has to do with airlines and airports these days.

The spotting areas can be secured enough that no one is going to get on the tarmac or runways but still be visible enough that the general public can spend a lazy afternoon just enjoying themselves.
iflyfsx 2
You people don't seem to understand why this would never happen in the US. Here, it's not about "security," but the opposite. It's about keeping people afraid, and selling them on the notion that the government is the only thing that can protect them. Which they happily buy every day, every time they go through "security."
Dear friend iflyfsx , with no malice , I beg to differ.
In some places security can be a definite issue. For example in my country India , we have similar issues and reasons. And that's why passion of plane spotting is not fashionable in India.
iflyfsx 0
Not sure how we differ, since I'm specifically commenting on the situation in the US, where security is not really an issue, but people can't wait to give up their rights for the *illusion* of security.
Dear friend iflyfsx , we differ because security IS ONE of the issues ! Even in the US .
iflyfsx 1
But it's not. Not really. The security issue was taken care of by reinforcing the cockpit doors, and having alert passengers. This "problem" was resolved several years ago. This is what actually stopped the incompetent attempts after 9/11. Not the tsa. Not even the nsa. The rest is security theater, fueled by paranoia, irrational fear, political/economic agendas, and so on. NOT security.
Dear friend iflyfsx , it seems we are NOT on the same page.
Either I have deviated from the subject or you have.
The subject is " Plane spotters " and "airport" security .
Right ?
And to my understanding the plane spotters are OUTSIDE the plane and do the "spotting" from the ground . The intention of the article becomes clear from the accompanying pictures also.
If my premise is wrong, I am wrong .
Or else ......
Pardon me if my elaboration is too long.
regards and happy blogging.
iflyfsx 1
...and my point is that the US government considers EVERYONE a threat, because it's not interested in real security, but in preserving a state of fear to control the population. Thus, spotters are never going to be considered an asset.

[This comment has been downvoted. Show anyway.]

Stefan Sobol 1
A lot of owners of private aircraft do not want their aircraft photographed and identified at a particular place and time. I have been run off public property at a number of airports for photographing private aircraft (I was trying to build a catalog of business jet aircraft). This was long before the current security concerns.

[This comment has been downvoted. Show anyway.]

Stefan Sobol 3
It was the people at the closest FBO to where ever I was taking pictures that would run me off. Not the owners of the airplanes. Apparently the FBO employees were told to protect the privacy of the aircraft. I didn't go onto to the FBO property (e.g. from the sidewalk), but usually there would be someone heading my way from the FBO shortly after they saw my camera.
ADXbear 1

[This comment has been downvoted. Show anyway.]

Ian Wilson 1
Recently spent 4 hours on the top deck of the car park behind the Hilton at ORD, fully expected a visit from Chicagos finest NO ONE. Nice suprise. Maybe a lucky day.
Great idea to have them incorporated with a Crime Watch Team. Why not? They enjoy the airport, know the area and if they can be vetted in same manner, an asset.
Airports in the UK seem more intent on driving enthusiasts away. Apart, I must add, Manchester which has a very reasonable facility.
Mike Lieb 1
DFW has a nice public spotting area just west of 18R, near the UPS cargo ramps - even has a speaker system for listening to the tower.
Ron Lorenz 0
Oh, the USA could do that, but you would have to have a background check, and
a cert, that they would charge you for and would have to renew it every year
or so!
indy2001 0
Why is an 8-month-old squawk appearing now?
randomguy 0
No idea, but your comment awoke my comment subscription.
David Aaron 0
KSLC had a very nice aircraft viewing lot at the approach end of 34R complete with speakers on posts tuned to the tower freq, this was all torn down after Sept 11 and the Airport Authority would force spotters to leave no matter where you were around the airport and it's perimeter, this was all done out of fear as there was no basis or rational behind it, in fact it would be much better to have some eyes in the area if anyone were up to no good but as it is there is nobody to stop or report suspicious activity as the airport authority is spread thin, not to mention that people outside the perimeter pose very little risk.

I commend the Canadian authorities for taking such a reasonable action.
The real risks at airports is still imposed by workers that are allowed to enter the air-side without passing through security screening each and every time and those that have access to luggage and cargo that is going aboard.

[This comment has been downvoted. Show anyway.]


Don't have an account? Register now (free) for customized features, flight alerts, and more!
Did you know that FlightAware flight tracking is supported by advertising?
You can help us keep FlightAware free by allowing ads from We work hard to keep our advertising relevant and unobtrusive to create a great experience. It's quick and easy to whitelist ads on FlightAware or please consider our premium accounts.