One of the UK’s smallest passenger airports is the first to get fever-detection cameras

Apr 29, 2020

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The first U.K. airport to screen arriving passengers for signs of coronavirus has installed its thermal fever-detection cameras.

According to Bournemouth Airport (BOH) bosses, the “thermal fever detection” cameras have been installed in the airport and can identify if a passenger has a fever. While the cameras are currently only installed at the airport’s staff entrance, they’ll eventually be installed at every entrance to the airport’s departures and arrivals terminal.

The decision to install the cameras at BOH came after the U.K. government decided against implementing health-screening technology at airports across the country. The decision was met with widespread criticism, including from John Holland-Kaye, the CEO of Heathrow, saying that the government wasn’t taking appropriate action to slow the spread of coronavirus from passengers arriving into the country.

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The government said that its decision was based on expert advice that clinical entry screening, such as temperature checks, has limited success and only can detect a small number of cases.

Ministers say that around 15,000 passengers still arrive in the U.K. each day. Currently, there are no measures in place to screen the health of passengers once they arrive in the U.K.

Body temperature checks begin at Osaka airport on April 24, 2020, with the use of thermography equipment amid the spread of the new coronavirus. (Photo by Kyodo News via Getty Images)
Body temperature checks begin at Osaka airport on 24 April, with the use of thermography equipment amid the spread of the new coronavirus. (Photo by Kyodo News via Getty Images)

Earlier this week, the government revealed that as part of a phased lifting of restrictions, it may require anyone entering the country that they will have to self-quarantine for 14 days. Under the plan, all travellers would be required to fill out an arrival card. The landing card would include details about their health and the address where they would self-isolate for the 14-day period.

Officials would be able to visit the registered addresses of those who arrive in the U.K. as marked on their arrival card to make sure they were adhering to quarantine measures. Anyone found to not be abiding by the quarantine measures could be subject to a fine.

The Daily Mail reports that at least two other airports are interested in installing the thermal fever detection cameras that are being used by Bournemouth.

In 2019, Bournemouth Airport transported 679,000 passengers, according to the Civil Aviation Authority — making it the 24th busiest airport in the country last year.

Featured photo by Peter Titmuss/Shutterstock.

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