Following the government’s mandatory order to install full-body scanners at 84 airports in India, Bengaluru’s Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) established the system, and the trial run began on 1 July 2019.
“Based on specifications issued by the BCAS, BIAL is using body scanners with Millimetre Wave (illumination) technology. This technology ensures that the scanners are safe for pregnant women and people with pacemakers,” a spokesperson for Bengaluru International Airport Limited (BIAL) said to the Hindustan Times.
After the trial, the body scanners at Bengaluru Airport will be made live by April 2020. The airport is adopting steps to replace the existing Door Frame Metal Detectors (DFMDs) in the security areas. However, KIA will retain one set of Door Frame Metal Detectors for the screening differently-abled or people with special medical conditions.
The order to install full-body scanners in hypersensitive airports came in June 2019 from the Bureau of Civil Aviation Secretary (BCAS). The airports at Mumbai, Hyderabad, Delhi, Amritsar, Kolkata, and Jammu & Kashmir come under hypersensitive airports.
Bengaluru airport is using body scanners with Millimetre Wave (illumination) technology as prescribed by BCAS. The technology is said to be safe to use on pregnant women and people with carrying pacemakers.
BCAS in April gave the travellers an option to avoid security search by having physical contact such as frisking. But, in such cases, the passenger has to agree to a full pat-down search. With the new full-body scanners, passengers can avoid all such methods. The passenger still has to remove items such as shoes, belts, jackets and thick clothing before scanning.
Walk-through metal detectors and hand-held metal detectors cannot detect non-metallic weapons and explosives. Body scanners detect both metallic and non-metallic items concealed on the body, the circular issued by BCAS stated.
The system also solves the fear of generating vulnerable images of the passengers while scanning. It uses privacy filters and hence, the system will create only an outline or a mannequin-like image for all genders. The sections that need further scanning will be highlighted using a yellow colour patch.
Installation of full-body scanners will improve passenger throughput in the airports as it makes the security check faster than before.