June 30th 2007 saw the United Kingdom being targeted with terrorist attacks once again. Glasgow airport faced panic and fear when a Jeep was driven into the doors of the main terminal and then burst into flames. On the airport’s busiest day of the year, there is no doubt that this was intended to cause mass destruction and chaos.
When it’s clear that this is the only way terrorists feel they can communicate with and get politicians in the Western World to listen to them, should our society live in fear of what’s going to happen next? You would think that people’s trust in public transport would be at an all time low. However, a shocking 90 percent of people in the UK have made no changes in their travel behaviour since the terrorist attack on Glasgow airport in June. Nine percent say the changes they have made are merely just being more alert about their surroundings. This means that only one percent of the population have been severely affected by the recent events.
What does this say about the general public? Do we whole – heartedly trust security officials at airports or has our society become so used to this targeted behaviour that we just accept it and carry on with our everyday lives? Perhaps 99 percent of the population are living in ignorant bliss and believe that it will never happen to them. Maybe we’re not affected by this kind of thing anymore or perhaps the events of June the 30th just weren’t shocking enough.
There is evidence to suggest that these events affect people more than they realise. September 11th saw an immediate and sharp reduction in demand for travel. Within a few weeks, well in excess of 100,000 jobs had been lost in the airline sector and travel agents, hotel companies and tour operators had to lay off staff. However, it’s not just people who use public transport that suffer. What about the people who happen to be walking past the twin towers at the time a plane flew into them, what about the train driver who went to work on 07/07 expecting it to be just another day and what about the person who walked into Glasgow airport to greet a loved one?
It does appear that on the whole, people have been left unaffected. 180,000 passengers are predicted to have passed through Glasgow airport last weekend with the start of the Glasgow fair. Less than a fortnight after the attack both terminals were operating normally and car parks were open as normal. Other than extra security being placed around the terminal and its approach roads, it seems like its business as usual. Cancellations have also been minimal showing that travellers remain confident in travelling to Glasgow and Scotland.