MARITIME, CHANNEL TUNNEL AND LONDON UNDERGROUND
TRANSEC regulates robust security regimes for
the UK's surface mode transport industries. TRANSEC's approach
to security is Threat and Risk based, and security requirements
are communicated to industry via Directions under the Aviation
and Maritime Security Act 1990 (AMSA) and an established system
of Risk tables. When the assessed Risk is increased by TRANSEC,
the security measures required are enhanced. This is an efficient
and accepted system, which enables flexibility and rapid responses
to changes in threat information and terrorist incidents. The
Risk table system facilitated a rapid response, across the surface
modes, to the events of 11 September. The Risk levels, and corresponding
security requirements, were raised on the day of (shortly after)
TRANSEC employs a number of operational methods
to ensure that compliance with security requirements is maintained.
These include test programmes, unannounced inspections, presentations,
roadshows, guidance and advice, and when necessary recourse to
What proportion of UK ports were not previously
(before 11 September) in receipt of TRANSEC advice?
Around the coast of the UK there are approximately
660 locations that can be classified as ports. This description
is a misnomer however, as many of these consist of just one jetty,
pushing the definition of a port to its extreme. A recent survey
established that there are around 100 commercially significant
ports, of which TRANSEC, prior to 11 September, regulated or issued
advice to around 45.
Since 11 September TRANSEC has issued general
maritime security advice to the remainder of the commercially
significant ports, and a number of the smaller operations.
Since the inception of AMSA, TRANSEC has regulated
the passenger services (both cruise and ferry operations) of all
ports serving International, Northern Ireland, Isle of Man and
Channel Islands routes. In addition the major domestic ferry routes,
for example Portsmouth to Isle of Wight, are also regulated.
In April 2001 TRANSEC broadened its remit, to
include those ports responsible for handling ro-ro freight shipments.
Thus even prior to 11 September, the number of ports within the
maritime security regime or those in receipt of TRANSEC guidance
had increased significantly.
What measures are you recommending be taken in
respect of protective security?
The UK already has a comprehensive maritime
(passenger) regime. The measures include the designation of restricted
zones, access control, pass systems, searching of vehicles and
In the wake of 11 September officials from the
DTLR's Ports Division initiated a review of UK port vulnerability.
This work is still continuing in conjunction with a number of
other government Departments and agencies. The vulnerability assessment
is being conducted to provide a centralised overview, and to inform
future policy in respect of port security. The Department is also
working with the international community through the International
Maritime Organisation (IMO), to establish international guidelines
to improve port security worldwide.
There are in excess of 600 ports around the
UK's coastline, of which 100 have been deemed as commercially
significant. Historically, given the UK's "Open Ports"
policy there has been no central government initiative to collate
information on, for example, which ports routinely store potentially
dangerous material. The vulnerability assessment is being conducted
to rectify this, and to provide a centralised overview.
The ultimate objective is to develop a proportionate
strategy for managing the security of ports in the UK, in tandem
with work being conducted through the IMO, to establish international
guidelines to improve port security world wide.
How serious a concern is the security of maritime
There is the potential for maritime container
traffic to be used by terrorists as a means of transporting weapons/introducing
explosive devices into the UK. Given the volume of such traffic
and the difficulties of screening/searching containers, there
is a risk, which needs to be minimised.
Container shipment is, given the volume and
nature of traffic, intrinsically difficult to screen, and it is
vital that the international maritime community continues to consider
what security measures could be established to reduce the risk.
The IMO is the best forum for this debate, and the issue of container
security has been tabled since 11 September by the US. It was
discussed at Maritime Safety Committee (MSC) in February, and
is also on the agenda for the May MSC. The UK is actively contributing
to the international debate on container security.
Although it is imperative that any such initiative
it taken forward internationally, the UK had assessed the threat
posed, in the context of ro-ro freight, prior to 11 September.
In April 2001, the UK introduced a Code of Practice for ro-ro
ports, this Code detailed what security measures should be considered
depending on the prevailing level of threat. Post 11 September
the measures were increased, in line with passenger ports, and
became more intrusive.
One of the latest developments, which potentially
has an application in a number of freight screening areas is RASCO,
a dog based, explosives detection system. This is soon to be utilised
for certain types of air cargo and will be deployed this summer
on cruise ship stores.
Are you satisfied that the security measures at
ferry ports are adequate in the light of our new understanding
of the potential terrorist threats?
We are currently satisfied that the levels of
security compliance being achieved by UK ferry ports is commensurate
to the prevailing levels of threat. However, we are not complacent
and measures and Risk Levels are continually reviewed.
UK international ferry ports are regulated by
TRANSEC, and generally we have been content with the levels of
compliance achieved, during a period of sustained and unprecedented
The fact that requirements demanded of domestic
ferry operations are not as onerous stems from the lack of historic
threat, the relatively low-profile of the services and the need
to balance security precautions with the commercial imperative.
Domestic ferry services are akin to trains and bus routes, in
that passengers turn up before the departure, board and travel
without the need to produce any travel documentation.
What arrangements do you have for co-ordinating
your activities with those of the Royal Navy (both port security
measures and operations)?
There has been increased dialogue since 11 September,
and my officials have met with their MoD counterparts to discuss
various aspects of port security where we have a common interest.
In the main, our concentration is on protective and preventative
security measures, whereas much of the MoD input relates to response
These discussions have been a useful cross fertilisation
exercise, but ultimately jurisdiction over port security remains
as pre-11 September, namely that the Royal Navy is responsible
for the security of dockyard ports, whilst the Transport Security
Division is responsible for security requirements as passenger
What advice have you issued to railway companies
since 11 September on additional protective security measures?
We immediately raised risk levels for all Railway
operations to HIGH (this has since been lowered). This required
additional security measures to be put in place such as: increased
searching of stations, control of access to vulnerable areas,
removal of litter bins at key stations, and using public address
systems to encourage passenger vigilance. Railways Security Circulars
have also been issued advising on aspects such as increased driver
cab security. As an outcome of 11 September TRANSEC has issued
an advisory note to all Local Authorities, detailing how to reduce
the external vulnerability of stations by taking into account
security concerns in the placement of street furniture, especially
litter bins. TRANSEC has also issued generic advice re CBRN issues
to its Nominated Security Contacts in the Railway industry.
TRANSEC issues guidance and advice to industry
through the National Railways Security Programme (NRSP), briefings
and the National Railways Security Committee. Compliance with
the guidance is monitored by a programme unannounced inspections
and tests. Until the first Railways Instruction is served (end
of May 2002) TRANSEC does not have any regulatory powers to enforce
security requirements, and all requirements are issued as advice.
Despite this we have been generally pleased with the level of
compliance, and we have forged an effective, constructive working
relationship with the TOCs etc.
Are you satisfied with the arrangements for co-ordinating
security measures between the various rail companies and other
agencies (eg emergency services, local authorities)?
TRANSEC's remit is restricted to protective
and preventative security measures. Once an incident occurs it
falls to the British Transport Police (BTP), local Police Authority,
and other emergency services to re-establish control over the
situation. TRANSEC does require contingency plans to be in place
to deal with security incidents. Co-ordination of such plans will
remain under the auspices of Railtrack Group standards, to ensure
a consistency of approach across the network.
We issued guidance to Local Authorities on the
installation of street furniture in February 2002. Train Operating
Companies have historically liaised with local authorities, but
the relationships are mixed.
TRANSEC came into being as a result of the Lockerbie
bombing. Its remit was (and remains) to regulate the counter terrorist
security measures of the highest profile passenger transport modes,
initially Aviation and Maritime (latterly augmented by Channel
Tunnel and Railways industries). This regulatory responsibility
is restricted to preventative/protective security, and once an
incident occurs, area control and response falls to the Home Office,
Local Police Authorities and other emergency services.
What responsibilities do you (TRANSEC) have for
security arrangements on LU? (Concern over CB attack)
DTLR does not at present have a regulatory responsibility
for LU. However, TRANSEC does chair a monthly meeting with representatives
of LUL, BTP and the Security Service to discuss security issues.
These meetings have been informative and have cemented an effective
working relationship between TRANSEC and LUL. TRANSEC is about
to commence an inspection programme to evaluate current measures.
Following the Sarin attack in Tokyo, LUL actively
considered what action is needed to take to deal with a similar
attack. BTP have trained officers to respond to CB attacks and
exercises have been held to test and develop contingency plans
involving the emergency services.
London Underground is one of the most publicly
accessible transport modes and is extremely busy. The volume of
users rules out passenger screening. Although it is a significant
security concern, it remains difficult to identify and recommend
any new measures.
LU has faced the threat of terrorist action
for a number of years and has taken appropriate and proportionate
action to put in place security measures such as CCTV, regular
patrols and control of access. It works closely with the BTP to
identify and eliminate areas of potential attack and has contingency
plans in place.
Research and assessment of possible counter
measures, including CBRN, continues. The main barrier to progress
in this work is technical feasibility rather than funding.
What specific measures have you taken to improve
security at the Channel Tunnel? How do you co-ordinate these with
your French counterparts?
Immediately following the events of 11 September
TRANSEC increased the percentage of freight and passenger vehicles,
passengers and rail freight to be searched before entering the
tunnel (with 100 per cent of certain "customers" depending
on operation) to the highest sustainable level. Access control
arrangements were also increased including increased searching
of staff, additional patrols, and certain vehicles and persons
were escorted on site.
TRANSEC has also issued generic advice re CBRN
issues to all Channel Tunnel operators
Officials hold regular meetings with their French
counterparts to discuss the efficacy of arrangements at the Tunnel.
In accordance with the terms of the Canterbury Agreement, similar
arrangements are in place on both sides of the Channel, but it
is recognised that the terrorist threat may differ.
The increase in the security at Eurotunnel and
Frethun in France as a result of the illegal immigration problems
is a separate issue, and while it does raise security concerns
the requirements are not mirrored in the UK.
TRANSEC and industry members are content that
the security arrangements at the Channel Tunnel remain appropriate
to the level of threat. Nevertheless, current procedures are presently
being reviewed and new measures considered.
UK and French officials meet on a quarterly
basis to discuss security issues. This Joint Security Committee
(JSC) enables the sharing of ideas and concerns and is a useful
forum. On an annual basis the Belgians attend the meeting (Tripartite
How far are you confident that a robust security
regime can be implemented on an EU wide basis?
The UK security arrangements for rail freight
include a system of security sealing at point of origin. The benefit
of this system is that it is possible to establish an audit trail.
This system became operational soon after Tunnel rail freight
operations commenced. The UK has the advantage that it is placing
these controls on loads originating from locations within the
UK and has agreed a similar system with the Republic of Ireland
should loads be sent. Checks on the integrity of the seals are
undertaken on entry to the UK Rail Freight Euroterminals and at
Dollands Moor, the UK equivalent of Frethun.
The French Government has established a similar
system with key terminals but it does not have control over arrangements
outside its borders except by bi-lateral agreements. The French
therefore rely on counter terrorist security checks at Frethun.
While all containers are liable to search, only a percentage of
rail freight wagons are checked, a similar requirement to that
in the UK.
Under the Treaty of Canterbury security regimes
for the Channel Tunnel aim to be comparable on either side of
the Tunnel. For freight, both sides are currently looking to screen
percentage of units for counter-terrorist purposes. In the UK
this is done by accepting units from Security Approved sites and
by checking a percentage of loads from non-approved sites with
explosive detection equipment. In France all the security checks
for freight are carried out at Frethun. These include the use
of dogs. However the number of illegal immigrants gaining access
to this country on freight trains is a cause for concern from
a terrorism point of view and is raised at our regular meetings
with the French authorities.