Britain’s 13-year ban on liquids and laptops from cabin luggage is set to finally end under plans unveiled by Boris Johnson for pioneering new airport screening equipment.
Holidaymakers and other air travellers will benefit from 3D cabin baggage technology that will be required for all UK airports by December 2022, No.10 revealed.
Under the changes, future passengers are expected to be able to keep liquids like bottles of water and electrical equipment in their cabin baggage while it is screened.
The rule requiring all liquids to be put in transparent plastic bags, with none allowed more than 100ml, was introduced in 2006 soon after the transatlantic ‘liquid bomb plot’ was foiled.
UK security officials discovered suspects had planned to disguise explosive liquid ingredients in soft drinks bottles, in a scheme to blow up transatlantic jets travelling from Heathrow to North America.
Heathrow has already announced its own plans to end the ban through the introduction of £50m scanners, but Johnson said that the move would be rolled out across the whole of the UK.
“We are home to the largest aviation network in Europe, with millions of people passing through our airports every year for work, holidays and family visits.
“We’re set to streamline those trips with the rollout of this ground-breaking technology – cutting down hassle for travellers and improving security measures.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps added: “The new screening equipment will improve security and make the experience smoother and less stressful for passengers. It could also mean an end to passengers having to use plastic bags or rationing what they take away with them.
Kate Nicholls, Chief Executive of UKHospitality and Chair of the Tourism Alliance said: “The new technology being rolled out should make for a smoother, more enjoyable passenger experience and will bolster the UK’s international reputation as traveller-friendly.
“Having passed through security more quickly, and with less hassle, passengers will be able to relax and begin to enjoy their holiday sooner.”