In the wake of the downing of a Malaysia Airlines flight over Ukraine, Americans have grown fearful that terrorists may shoot down a commercial plane with a ground-to-air missile.
A new survey found that 47% of Americans who were questioned said they are "somewhat" or "very" worried that terrorists might shoot down a passenger plane in the U.S.
The same survey of 1,000 people, commissioned by the Reason Foundation, a Los Angeles libertarian think tank, found that 42% of Americans said they would be willing to pay higher airline prices to add anti-missile technology on commercial planes.
Aviation experts say the chances of terrorists shooting down a commercial plane in the U.S. from the ground are slim and the cost of installing anti-missile systems on passenger planes is prohibitive.
"That would be ridiculous," said Robert Ditchey, an aviation consultant and safety expert, of the idea of putting an anti-missile system on commercial flights.
The type of missile that shot down the Malaysian plane was radar-guided, he said. To stop such a missile would required a sophisticated system installed and operated on each commercial plane to either "jam" the radar guidance system or destroy the system on the ground.