Nearly 1 in 5 bags going through security at aiirport failed new rule

Nearly 1 in 5 bags going through security at aiirport failed new rule Nearly 1 in 5 bags going through security at aiirport failed new rule

Birmingham Airport's £700,000-a-year boss has come under fire after blaming passengers for huge queues.

Nearly one in five bags going through security today failed the new 100ml liquid rule amid confusion over the policy.

Chief executive Nick Barton said there had been 'bedding in' issues following the opening of a £60 million security hall - with passengers forced to wait in queues snaking out of the terminal to go through security.

It is designed so liquids can be kept in hand luggage. But following a government edict, travellers have had to remove them again, which Mr Barton said was like 'keeping a sports car in first gear'.

He also appeared to blame passengers for not following baggage rules, saying: 'A non-compliant bag with liquids over 100ml can add up to 20 minutes to each passenger's journey through security.'

Mr Barton said the situation was 'not what we planned', and a pre-screening facility would next week be set up to ease queues.

Passenger Keith Jervis said: 'It is time Nick Barton considered his position or is sacked.'

Birmingham Airport - that has launched the new 'state-of-the-art' scanners - has been criticised on social media as passengers have had to wait hours to get through security with huge queues out the terminal doors.

However, today the airport hit back, blaming the queues on the fact that 18 percent of all bags going through its 'state-of-the-art' security hall were flagged as non-compliant, which added 20 minutes to each wait.

Bosses at Birmingham Airport also rejected passenger claims that the queues to enter the terminal topped two and a half hours - saying the delays were 70 minutes at most.

A spokesperson for the airport told Birmingham Live: 'This morning at its peak, 18 per cent of all bags going through security were non-compliant, meaning that they had liquids over 100ml in them.

When a bag is rejected by the scanner because of a liquid this can typically add up to 20 minutes to each passenger's journey time through security.

'Our maximum queue time was 70 minutes and definitely not two and a half hours. Our outdoor queues, seen today, are from 'liquid check stations that are located outside the terminal.'

Confused? We're not surprised. Here we explain all...

Presently - all UK airports are operating the 100ml liquid rule, regardless of the scanners in place.

But airports with new scanners have more flexibility around how cabin bags move through security.

LondonCity, Aberdeen, Newcastle, Leeds/Bradford, Southend and Teesside airports, have all installed new 3D CT- (computed tomography) based scanners in security halls and had scrapped the 100ml rule. Thanks to their new technology, passengers could bring up to two litres of liquids in any bottle size in carry-on luggage and not remove them at security.

However, on June 9, these airports were ordered to return to the 100ml liquid rule despite running the next-generation security checkpoints (NGSC), which create a 3D image of what is inside passengers' bags, allowing them to better identify objects.

Laptops and tablets, however, can remain in carry-on luggage.

"Passengers should continue to check security requirements with their departure airport before travelling "
A Department for Transport spokesperson

A Department for Transport spokesperson told MailOnline: 'From Sunday 9 June, 2024, 100ml restrictions on liquids will temporarily be reintroduced for passengers travelling from six regional airports where Next Generation Security Checkpoints (NGSC) are in full operation.

'This temporary move is to enable further improvements to be made to the new checkpoint systems and will only affect a small number of passengers.

'For most passengers, security measures will remain unchanged.

'Passengers should continue to check security requirements with their departure airport before travelling.'

UK AIRPORT LIQUID RULES

UK airports and scanner status:

  • Birmingham - new scanners / 100ml rule
  • Leeds Bradford - new scanners / 100ml rule
  • London City - new scanners / 100ml rule
  • Aberdeen - new scanners / 100ml rule
  • Southend - new scanners / 100ml rule
  • Teesside - new scanners / 100ml rule
  • Newcastle - new scanners / 100ml rule
  • Gatwick - old scanners / 100ml rule
  • Stansted - new scanners / 100ml rule
  • East Midlands - old scanners / 100ml rule
  • Manchester - new scanners / 100ml rule
  • Heathrow - old scanners / 100ml rule
  • Edinburgh - new scanners / 100ml rule

Current liquid rules for airports with new scanners:

Bottles to be no larger than 100ml

Airports in control of amount of liquid in total (up to two litres) and whether they must be removed from bags or stored in clear pouches

UK airports without new scanners operating liquid rules dating back to 2006:

Bottles/containers to be no larger than 100ml

Liquids must total under one litre

Passengers must remove liquids from hand luggage at security

Liquids to be kept in clear, plastic bags

New-style liquid rules (to be introduced in future):

Liquids may remain in luggage at security

Bottles can be of any size and loose inside bags

Liquids can total up to two litres

Passengers who pack liquids in bottles of over 100ml will be subject to manual checks at the airport and those items will be at risk of being discarded.

At airports with new scanners, whether travellers are required to pack their liquids in clear, plastic bags, remove them from luggage or can pack more than one litre of liquid in multiple containers is up to the individual airport, the Department for Transport confirmed to MailOnline Travel.

What if you are travelling from a different airport than the six targeted by the Department for Transport?

A number of the UK's major airports have already installed some of the new checkpoints in security halls - however none have yet changed their liquid rules.

London Stansted, Manchester and Edinburgh all have at least some of the new 3D-scanners in place. However, as their new security halls are incomplete and some old scanners still remain none have changed their liquid rules.

This means you should still follow the 100ml rule, and other liquid restrictions, that have been in place for the past 18 years at all three airports.

London Gatwick, East Midlands Airport and London Heathrow have not yet introduced any new scanners and so their security halls are unable to comply with new restrictions and the 100ml rule remains in place for the foreseeable future.

So what happened atBirminghamAirport?

The airport had installed the new scanners, but has been limiting liquids to 100ml 'due to an outstanding regulatory restriction', Nick Barton, CEO, told the BBC.

The airport blames passengers for the long queues, accusing them of incorrectly packing their bags.

The problem was exacerbated, a source told The Independent, by the new scanners misidentifying innocent items, such as sun cream, as 'threats'.

Why was the 100ml rule introduced?

The 100ml rule was introduced in 2006 following a foiled terror plot to blow up planes flying from London to the US with home-made liquid bombs.

The restrictions required passengers to pack up to one litre of liquids or less in bottles of no more than 100ml.

Liquids, it was stipulated, had to be sealed in a clear, plastic bag and removed from bags before being scanned at security.

Thanks to Nicky Kelvin atThe Points Guyfor permission to run his scanner image.

Read more
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