The United States might ban laptops from aircraft cabins of all flights into and out of the country, John Kelly, Secretary of Homeland Security, said.
In an interview , Kelly said the U.S. plans to “raise the bar” on airline security, including tightening screening of carry-on items.
“That’s the thing that they are obsessed with, the terrorists, the idea of knocking down an airplane in flight, particularly if it’s a U.S. carrier, particularly if it’s full of U.S. people.”
In March the government imposed restrictions on large electronic devices in aircraft cabins on flights from 10 airports, including the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Turkey.
Kelly said the move would be part of a broader effort to tighten airline security to combat what he called “a real sophisticated threat.” He said no decision has been made as to the timing of any ban.
“We are still following the intelligence,” he said, “and are in the process of defining this, but we’re going to raise the bar generally speaking for aviation much higher than it is now.”
Airlines are concerned that a broad ban on laptops may erode customer demand. But none want an incident aboard one of their airplanes.