PaintSquare.com


The First Word in Protective & Marine Coatings

A Product of Technology Publishing / PaintSquare
JPCL | PaintSquare News | Durability + Design | Paint BidTracker

JPCL FREE Trial

Paint and Coatings Industry News

Main News Page


Feds Probe ‘Invisible Paint’ Graffiti

Friday, September 23, 2011

Comment | More

Federal authorities are investigating the defacing of several Southwest Airlines 737s with a special “invisible paint” that appears only after the plane is warmed with an auxiliary power unit.

Persistent reports that the scrawls were Arabic symbols or secret messages triggered fears of terrorism last week, but language authorities said later that the markings did not appear to be Arabic.

 Invisible paint markings appear after the plane heats up
An anonymous Southwest employee said the markings look like swords.

Nevertheless, both the FBI and the Transportation Security Administration are investigating, and Southwest Airlines is conducting “an internal investigation,” a spokeswoman said.

Press reports say the marks appear to have been etched using a chemical process and become more prominent as the plane heats up.

‘Internal Vandalism’

The graffiti began appearing in February and has increased in recent weeks, the airline and press reports said.

In a statement Thursday, Southwest said the “markings have no affiliation to any known group or activity” and were being treated as vandalism. The airline did not say how many planes have been affected.

“Southwest takes this behavior very seriously, and we will continue to involve local and federal law enforcement agencies as needed until the situation is resolved,” the airline said, adding that aircraft safety “is in no way impacted” by the graffiti.

An internal Southwest memo obtained by ABC News said the airline was investigating the matter as an “internal vandalism issue.”

‘Disturbing Questions’

The paint appears toward the back of the 737 aircraft, but only after an auxiliary power unit is turned on, warming the underbelly, engines and landing gear. Most of the affected planes appear to be flying out of Los Angeles, reports said.

A Southwest employee told gawker.com that the markings “are on the exhaust pipe of the engines. Usually on the inboard side. And most of them are described as looking like swords. (picture an elongated “S” with a line crossing it toward one end.)”

Los Angeles radio reporter Charles Feldman, who first reported the story, said the incidents raise “disturbing questions about the security, because anybody who has the ability to write on an airplane and can get that close to do it, also has the ability to do other things to that aircraft.”

   

Tagged categories: Criminal acts; Graffiti

Comment from Car F., (9/26/2011, 11:13 AM)

Trap within themselves, the fear striken dwellers committed suicide....then things returned to normal.


Comment Join the Conversation:

Sign in to our community to add your comments.

CHLOR*RID International Inc.
Surface cleanliness is
ESSENTIAL to coating
performance.

* TEST FOR SALTS
* PREVENT FLASH RUST
* REMOVE SALTS
More information at
www.chlor-rid.com,

800-422-3217


JPCL Europe
Don’t miss an issue!

JPCL EUROPE offers essential news and knowledge for protective and marine coatings professionals in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Subscribe now: www.jpcleurope.com


Axxiom Manufacturing
Schmidt Improves
Portable Blasters

Schmidt's VBS System reduces blowdown intensity, prevents exhaust from damaging floor while using no screens or filters. Reduces sound; Increasing safety.
Call 1-800-231-2085


Novatek Corporation
Dustless Coatings Removal

Strip it, clean it, and profile it,
all dust free! High production
rates and Blast like finishes.
Comply with new lead
standards.


Wasser High-Tech Coatings Inc.
Wasser Coatings Protect

some of the most important bridges in the country; learn about our NEPCOAT-approved system and our entire range of MCU & Polyurea coatings. 1-800-627-2968 www.wassercoatings.com


Industrial Vacuum Equipment Corp.
Hurricane Vacuums
& Dust Collectors

Vacuum and dust collector hose, filters and related accessories.
IndustrialVacuum.com


Termarust Technologies
Termarust (HR CSA) Chemically Stops
Active Corrosion

Truss bridge treated with Termarust's (HR CSA) in 1995. This highway & rail truss bridge is still stable and there still is no active corrosion.

 
 
 
Technology Publishing

The Technology Publishing Network

The Journal of Protective Coatings & Linings (JPCL) PaintSquare
Durability + Design Paint BidTracker JPCL Europe

 
EXPLORE:      JPCL   |   PaintSquare News   |   Interact   |   Buying Guides   |   Webinars   |   Resources   |   Classifieds
REGISTER AND SUBSCRIBE:      Free PaintSquare Registration   |   Subscribe to JPCL   |   Subscribe to PaintSquare News
MORE:      About PaintSquare.com   |   Privacy policy   |   Terms & conditions   |   Site Map   |   Search   |   Contact Us
 

© Copyright 2000-2014, Technology Publishing / PaintSquare, All rights reserved
2100 Wharton Street, Suite 310, Pittsburgh PA 15203-1951; Tel 1-412-431-8300; Fax 1-412-431-5428; E-mail webmaster@paintsquare.com