One of the things that we are discovering here at Heathrow Airport is that people are now being informed that there is going to be a new norm when you go to the airport. We thought that was already the case after 9/11, but today marks the beginning of another new reality people are going to have to get accustomed to when traveling.
Here at Heathrow Airport, Europe's largest airport, passengers are being told that they can only carry things on-board that can be seen through a see-through plastic bag. That means just the essentials like travel documents, passports, tickets. That does not include cell phones, laptops, or any electronic equipment at all.
..And no liquids. Many people are accustomed to getting on planes and carrying extra water, a soft drink, or coffee. As of today, that is not going to be allowed. We understand that is because authorities believe that this suspected terrorist plot included a bomb that could have been ignited with some liquid chemical component. Therefore, they have instituted these very stringent measures.
Inside the terminal here people are anxious and want to know what is happening with their flights. Many flights have been cancelled and are not leaving here. And hundreds of flights have been canceled that were scheduled to arrive. People are also being kept outside the terminal until it is their check-in time – so that authorities can try to maintain control.
It may surprise you, but it is also relatively calm in the terminals here. People apparently are understanding and, in some cases, appreciative of the strict security measures. Many are saying that if this is necessary to keep them safe, then so be it.