Teesside Airport becomes first U.K. airport to ditch 100ml liquid rule
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If you want the smoothest journey possible through airport security right now, you’ll find it at North East England’s Teesside Airport (MME), which has just made history by becoming the U.K.’s first air hub to scrap the 100ml liquid rule.
Stealing the thunder of London City Airport (LCY), which had been primed to land the honour, the Darlington-based hub has pipped its bigger rival thanks to the arrival of state-of-the-art C3 scanners.
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In line with new rules from the CAA, it’s part of a nationwide rollout of these CT scanners (similar to what you’d find in leading hospitals) which are so precise that they eliminate the need to separate liquids from bags and suitcases.
Purveyors of miniature shampoo bottles be damned: passengers can now leave liquids of up to two litres in their bags while clearing security, as well as laptops — which will be music to the ear of weary business travellers accustomed to conveyer belt rummaging.
It will also minimise the chances of your small suitcase being diverted onto a separate conveyer belt and watching on as a stranger rifles through your delicates to recover a rogue bottle of miniature tanning lotion.
It’s been a long time coming, too. The previous guidelines had been implemented almost two decades ago, all the way back in 2006, following a thwarted terror plot involving explosives hidden inside drinks bottles.
As well as speeding up passenger journeys through security, the new rules are a huge aviation milestone, and even more impressive when you factor in that it’s first been implemented by a regional hub, well before the big boys.
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen has called the early implementation of the scanners a real win for the region: “Some airports have announced they’re looking to end the restriction in time for the Easter holidays, but we’re one step ahead in having already scrapped the limit – showing how local, regional airports are going further, faster for the people that they serve.
“Passenger safety and experience is front-and-centre of all we do at Teesside Airport, and these scanners play a massive part in both.”
London City, which has already tested the new scanners with passengers, is still on track to drop the old liquid rules by Easter. Bosses at the airport have said they plan to have this next-gen hardware installed throughout its security areas by the end of this month.
And if the rule scrapping has an instant impact this Easter, we might see more airports take the leap as early as they look to ease congestion in their terminals this summer and avoid a repeat of the queues that went hand-in-hand with the Great Holiday Rush of 2022.
As it stands, however, Teesside, which operates international flights to Iceland, Greece, Turkey, Spain, The Netherlands and more, continues to punch well above its weight.
Featured image by SOLSTOCK/GETTY
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