Security tightened at 13 Indonesian airports in wake of Surabaya bombings

An policeman stands guard on a street following a bomb blast at a police station in Surabaya, Indonesia, on May 14, 2018.
An policeman stands guard on a street following a bomb blast at a police station in Surabaya, Indonesia, on May 14, 2018.PHOTO: REUTERS

JAKARTA (THE JAKARTA POST/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Indonesian state-owned airport operator PT Angkasa Pura I (AP I) has tightened security at 13 of its airports following several bomb attacks in East Java's capital city of Surabaya on Sunday (May 13) and Monday.

"A number of measures have been taken to improve safety and security at airports to prevent any bomb attacks," said AP I president director Faik Fahmi, as reported by kompas.com on Monday.

The company has intensified patrols around the airports, increased profiling through CCTV analysis, conducted random checks on vehicles and intensified coordination with external security forces, Mr Faik said.

A security post was established in each airport as a coordinating centre between internal and external security forces to help ease coordination if any assistance is needed, he said, adding that security officers were required to work double shifts.

"So we have at least double the number of security officers on duty," he said, adding that Juanda International Airport in Surabaya had 723 security personnel standing guard instead of the usual 216.

The total number of security officers guarding all 13 airports has so far reached 3,835, Mr Faik said.

The firm is also managing traffic in surrounding areas, with more personnel checking vehicles and guiding those approaching airport terminals.

 

"Passengers are advised to arrive three hours before departure to anticipate traffic because of (intensified) security checks on vehicles entering the airport," Mr Faik said.

Meanwhile, hotels in Surabaya have beefed up security in the wake of the blasts. 

Archipelago International Hotels regional marketing and communications manager Dina Yudhari told KompasTravel on Monday: “Our guests and employees are safe. Guest and employee safety and security remain our main priority.”

She said the hotel management chain had been consistently applying threat mitigation steps, security system audits and standard operating procedures, not only in Surabaya but in all Archipelago International hotels. 

“Following the bombings, we have reminded our hotels to increase security to ensure guest and employee safety. We are also monitoring the situation,” she said.

Agus Triyono, general manager of Hotel Santika Gubeng, also said security had been increased in his hotel. “We have increased security measures and are constantly communicating with the police.”