19:04 24 May 2020
Covid-19 thermal screening technology is currently being trialled at London Heathrow Airport Terminal 2's immigration hall. These thermal screening cameras aim to aid the rapid creation of a Common International Standard for health screening as the world prepares to reopen national and international borders.
The thermal screening technology uses camera detection systems designed to detect elevated temperatures, a symptom of Covid-19. During the trial, passengers will be alerted through signages placed throughout the immigration hall but no personal data will be stored.
Temperature screening is part of Heathrow Airport's initiative in exploring ways to reduce the risk of contracting or transmitting the coronavirus while travelling. Measures that are currently in place at the airport include enhanced cleaning regimes, availability of hand sanitising stations and putting up signages featuring government health advice and social distancing reminders. It is also exploring the use of ultra-violet sanitation to quickly and efficiently sanitise security trays and contact-free security screening equipment in order to reduce person-to-person contact.
John Holland-Kaye, CEO of London Heathrow Airport, said: "We welcome the Secretary of State of Transport's 'air bridge' proposals to allow trade to continue between destinations with low COVID-19 risks. To unlock the full benefits of aviation for the economy, a Common International Standard for health screening must be agreed by the global authorities - and the technology we are trialling now could be part of this solution. As one of the world's great trading nations, the UK should take a lead in setting a global plan to reopen borders, when it is safe to do so. This will help millions of British jobs that rely on aviation, but are currently at risk."