Airports have always had security systems in place but most of the time it was to prevent drug smuggling or passengers returning from holiday with too much in the way of duty free. Since there have been terrorist attacks, security has become tighter and it is explosive devices that have become the thing to look for. For most people the system of getting through security is easy as bags go through a scanner and liquids and toiletries are carried in see through bags. Sniffer dogs are often seen around the departure points, and while they do a good job to pick up a wide range of substances, there are things they can miss and as a result technology is required.
Quite what happens to our checked in luggage is unknown other than the fact that it is thrown around and damaged, but it is very likely that it goes through a scanner and certainly in the UK it is x-rayed before it is allowed on the plane. More is known about hand luggage as that happens in front of us. The main things that happen with hand luggage is that it is passed through a scanner. It will pick up anything unusual that is in the case in the same way that an x-ray will show what is below the external layers. A machine is also used to pick up explosives as that may have been packed in a way that made it difficult for the normal scanner to pick up.
Passengers are also screened and there are different machines at different airports. All passengers will go through a metal detector while their bags are in the scanner, but some airports go a step further. Body scanners will pick up anything that is underneath the clothes, so if there is something that is not metal, it will still be found. There is also a pat down search carried out in case anything has been missed. There have been concerns when it comes to body scanners, especially backscatter x-rays as there is a slight exposure to radiation when the high resolution image is made, although it is at most 1% of the exposure from a medical x-ray.
Companies have been quick off the mark to bring in new technology and along with the normal systems in situ, there is now a resonance carpet that will check that there is nothing unusual in shoes without the need for them to be removed. Not only is this more comfortable for passengers who by and large just want to get from one place to another, but speeds up the process altogether.
Whole Airport Security
Knowing how difficult it can be to get through security with prohibited substances, there have been attempts made to breach the perimeters of the airport and lay traps that can be fatal. To combat this there is the use of fibre optic systems that can detect any intrusions. As these systems work in real time, the authorities can be notified right away and the areas searched before the situation gets out of control.
There is clearly a cost implication for all the new processes and technology but if it keeps people safe and planes in the air it can only be a good thing.
Matt Jackson is the author of this intriguing guest post. He is a creative writer and a successful blogger. He shares his views and insights about the business world through his articles. He feels every office should have ID card printers as they are very handy.