UK airport ends security checks for passengers

Air ambulance rescue
Air ambulance rescue

An airport in Scotland has abolished its security screening in an attempt to improve the passenger experience, but a union has warned of the risks of a terror attack.

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Highlands and Islands Airports Ltd (HIAL) has ended the standard screening of passengers and their cabin baggage at Campbeltown Airport, in southwest Scotland. Barra and Tiree have also had their security screening abolished.

Prospect union claims the move makes a terrorist attack "far more likely," especially as flight paths into Glasgow pass nuclear power facilities, an oil terminal and Ministry of Defence buildings, writes Simon Calder for the Independent.

The rules which ban liquids over 100ml, sharp items and firearms still apply but passengers are asked to make an oral declaration that they are not carrying any of the banned objects.

Prospect's negotiator David Avery told the Independent: "Even with planes the size of these, which are very small, when they're flying over urban areas, when they're flying over oil depots, the size doesn't particularly matter."

Highlands and Islands Airports Ltd (HIAL) said: "These new arrangements have been agreed and approved by the Department for Transport and the Civil Aviation Authority. They continue to place safety and security at the forefront of every passenger's journey, whilst offering facilitation benefits in most cases."

In 2015, there were calls to put an end to Campbeltown Airport's "invasive" security checks.

Alan Baker, the acting chairman at Campbeltown Community Council, told the Campbeltown Courier: "The practice at Campbeltown airport of rummaging through every inch of passengers' check-in and carry-on luggage is outdated."