The US Federal Aviation Administration has finalised a rule requiring new passenger aircraft have “secondary” cockpit barriers, a measure intended to better prevent passengers from storming the cockpit.

“Aircraft manufacturers are required to install secondary barriers on commercial aircraft produced after the rule goes into effect,” the FAA says on 14 June.

The new secondary barriers will “ensure the safety of aircraft, flight crew and air passengers” by protecting cockpits “when the flight deck door is open”, it adds.

The rule takes effect in 60 days.

The measure alters US air carrier operating rules and aircraft certification rules to require that aircraft manufactured two years after the rule takes effect – meaning after roughly mid-August 2025 – have the devices.

The barriers are intended to provide an additional level of safety during periods when, in flight, pilots enter and exit cockpits.

“When the flight deck door must be opened for lavatory breaks, meal service or crew changes, the flight deck could be vulnerable to attack. This rule… is [intended] to slow such an attack long enough so that an open flight deck door can be closed and locked before an attacker could reach the flight deck,” the rule says.

The new cockpit barriers must be capable of resisting 272kg (600lb) of load in the forward direction, 463kg of load in the aft director, and of delaying a person’s entry into the cockpit by at least 5sec.

The rule has support from pilot union Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA), which calls the requirement “long overdue”.

The US Congress ordered the FAA in a 2018 law to require the secondary barriers. The FAA proposed the rule in August 2022.