Business Insider has a piece on the how the President’s plane can defend itself.
Air Force One — technically whatever plane the President is onboard but currently a Boeing 747-200 (and eventually a new 747-8) — costs over $200,000 an hour to operate. Speaking of ‘operate’ there’s an onboard operating room staffed by a doctor whenever the plane is inflight.
Etihad’s ‘The Residence’ has nothing on Air Force One, whose President’s quarters includes not just sleeping quarters and a shower but also a gym.
There’s 4000 square feet of interior space. The President has an office, there’s a ‘situation room’ and a staff quarters.
Air Force One has the following defense capabilities:
- “Mirror-ball defense technology in the wings scramble infrared missile guidance systems”
- “Electronic countermeasure defense systems…jam enemy radar”
- “Flares hidden in the wings..to confuse enemy missiles”
- “The body of the plane can withstand a nuclear blast on the ground”
- Each exit has its own retractable staircase, to avoid risk of sabotage of whatever staircase would be provided on the ground
- Windows are armored
When safety really matters, there’s no involvement by the TSA.