Sick of standing in queues at security before you fly? Good news: airports across the country will soon be introducing a system that could cut your waiting times dramatically, and eradicate the 100ml limit on liquids altogether.
A new computed tomography has been equipped to screen better images of cabin baggage instantly – a development which is set to end the hassle of removing liquids and laptops from cabin baggage when passing through security.
Prime minister Boris Johnson confirmed the news in a statement, explaining that the updates – a major change to the system that’s been in place for the last 13 years – will make travelling through the UK more straightforward than ever.
‘We’re set to streamline those trips with the toll-out of this ground-breaking technology – cutting down hassle for travellers and improving security measures,’ he said.
‘By making journeys through UK airports easier than ever, this new equipment will help boost the vital role our airports play in securing the UK’s position as a global hub for trade, tourism and investment.’
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps added: ‘The new screening equipment will improve security and make the experience smoother and less stressful for passengers.’
Earlier this year, it was reported that Heathrow hopes to install the new equipment across its terminals by 2022, in a plan that’s set to cost over £50 million.
Not only will the new technology make security screening quicker and more robust but it could significantly reduce the amount of plastic used at the airport, with travellers no longer expected to put their liquids in plastic bags before being screened.
Heathrow is the first UK airport to trial the advanced technology as they look to launch in the coming months.
Heathrow Chief Operations Officer, Chris Garton, said: ‘Heathrow has a proud history of investing in making every journey better and that’s why we’re delighted to be rolling out our new CT equipment. This cutting-edge kit will not only keep the airport safe with the latest technology, but will mean that our future passengers can keep their focus on getting on with their journeys and less time preparing for security screening.’
Aviation Minster, Baroness Vere added: ‘Passenger safety remains our top priority and this programme clearly shows the huge importance we place on security.’
‘This innovative new equipment will ensure Heathrow continues to provide a safe and smooth travel experience for passengers, as we look to roll out this new screening technology at airports across the country.’
In May, The Sun reported that Heathrow airport will soon introduce facial recognition technology, meaning you will not have to repetitively show your passport and boarding documents at different stages through your airport journey (think, at the check in desk, at security, etc).
The project, which will reportedly also cost a cool £50 million, could reduce a passenger’s journey through the airport ‘up to one-third’ – but you’ll still need to bring your passport to the airport.