The UK Royal Air Force (RAF) scrambled its fighter jets twice in March, after receiving terrorist alerts from transatlantic passenger jets.

On 2 March, after a passenger attempted to get onto the flight deck of the American Airlines plane, the RAF scrambled Tornado F3s from RAF Leuchars in Fife and Typhoons from RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire to shadow an American Airlines plane on its way to Heathrow from Dallas.

In a similar terror alert on 22 March, the RAF scrambled Typhoons from RAF Coningsby to shadow an American flight across UK airspace into Belgium, where it landed.

During the incident, UK air-traffic controllers picked up phrases including the words “ransom” and “hostage” from the flight.

In such situations scrambled RAF fighters can shoot down the airliners if they are deemed to be an immediate threat.

The decision on the scrambled jets’ course of action ispart of a chain of command that is active 24 hours, at the highest level of government, according to the Independent.

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData
Visit our Privacy Policy for more information about our services, how we may use, process and share your personal data, including information of your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.

On 10 March, the RAF had to scramble fighter jets off the Hebrides to counter a probing Russian Blackjack aircraft, which is capable of carrying a nuclear payload.