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Aug
27
2019

New tech may end liquid restrictions on flights

Items to pack in a suitcase

From binning half-empty bottles of water to buying mini-toiletries for your ski holiday for singles, liquid restrictions on flights can be an inconvenience for many passengers. However, this could soon change as the government announces UK airports must introduce 3D baggage screening equipment before the end of 2022.

Currently, passengers are only able to take liquids no more than 100ml through airport security, which must be presented in a transparent plastic bag sized about 20cm x 20cm. The BBC reports that the restrictions may come to an end as the new equipment will detect liquid inside bags.

The first UK airport to install the technology is London’s Heathrow Airport, who reveal they are spending £50m on this over the next few years. The chief executive of Heathrow John Holland-Kaye believes that it will make travel “less disruptive.”

The technology, which is similar to CT Scanners in hospitals, allows a clear picture and the ability to zoom and rotate for inspection, which means staff can easily identify liquid contained in luggage. It is already being used in some US airports and Amsterdam.

John also explains, as reported on Lonely Planet: “We can detect what liquid is inside a bottle, we can look inside a laptop and see whether it has any dangerous devices inside it, and that allows us to have a much higher level of security on the plane.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson tells the BBC: “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,”

The Transport Secretary Grant Shapps adds: “No more pulling out your socks and your underwear and having to separate your liquids and take your laptops out”.

With the introduction of the new technology set to make clearing security 50 to 60 times faster, this will be a welcomed changed for people who travel often for work or want to board their holiday flight quickly. If you’re going on a singles holiday anytime soon, it’s worth checking to see if your airport has updated its policy on liquids.