Passengers at Newcastle International Airport are being urged this summer to take more notice of security regulations forbidding them to carry liquid items in their hand luggage. It has been revealed that bottles of liquid have become a serious administrative problem for security officials at the airport, who estimate that they confiscate approximately 800 bottles of prohibited liquids each day. This amounts to approximately 400 litres of liquid each year worth an estimated £1000 and enough to fill a full sized swimming pool.
The tightened security restrictions came into play in August 2006, following the arrest on August 10 of a number of Britons accused of a terrorist plot to detonate liquid explosives on board aircraft travelling across the Atlantic. However, hundreds of passengers using Newcastle Airport each day still seem unaware of the restrictions, causing security teams to spend up to ten hours every day disposing of and recycling the liquids.
According to security officials at the airport, the most commonly confiscated items are bottles of water, carbonated drinks, suntan lotion, toothpaste and shampoo. Other passengers, however, have been forced to part with more valuable items such as vintage champagne or bottles of spirits. Now that the holiday season is in full swing, security officials wish to ensure passengers are clear on the rules when packing for their flight. Peter Snell, the airport’s landslide operations manager, has advised passengers to put liquids, gels, creams, lotions and aerosols into the luggage holds where possible. He added that if passengers do need liquid items on the flight they should ensure they are in containers of 100 ml or less and in a resealable transparent bag for easy checking by security staff. Passengers unsure of liquid regulations should check the Department for Transport guidelines before embarking on their trip.