POSTED: 2nd December 2008

BCS Group secures surge in domestic air travellers this summer

Regional airports have moved swiftly to upgrade security systems ahead of this Summer’s anticipated increase in domestic travel and compliance with yesterday’s Department of Infrastructure and Regional Services mandate deadline of December 1, 2008.

The new measures are part of a commitment from the Australian Government to help improve aviation safety and security throughout regional Australia. It ensures passengers can expect the same level of safety at home as when they travel internationally.

BCS Group, an Australian-based baggage handling systems (BHS) specialist, has been selected to implement 'Checked Bag and Passenger Screening' at 40% (the majority) of regional airports, including important tourist destinations, Ayers Rock, Ballina, Proserpine, and State hubs, Broome, Mildura, Port Macquarie, Mount Isa and Townsville.

Checked Baggage Screening (CBS) is an important aviation security measure that examines passengers' luggage to ensure that explosives are not brought on board aircraft. The measure operates by a number of means including X-ray examination, testing for chemical residues using Explosive Trace Detection (ETD) equipment; and physical search.

"With the tightening of consumer expenditure and current unfavourable exchange rate meaning that  destinations in the US and Europe are 50% more expensive, domestic travel is expected to  continue to grow strongly with government figures showing that domestic flights have doubled in size over the last 8 years to 49.76 million flights in the year ended August, 2008.  Cosnequently, it is vital these passengers can be assured of their safety," said David Jerram, General Manager, BCS  Airports Systems. "BCS Group has built 15 years' experience into highly specialised baggage security systems to ensure Australians can relax and enjoy their holiday from the moment they step into the airport."

BCS Airport Systems specialises in the development, design, manufacture, installation and servicing of a broad range of innovative, state of the art baggage handling systems and components suitable for small regional ports right through to large International Airports handling 20-30million passengers per year.

More than 30 selected regional airports are undertaking projects to comply with 'Checked Bag Screening' requirements in tandem with processes already in place at Category 1 / 2 terminals.

The regulations are based on 'Regular Jet Public Transport Aircraft Services' requiring any regional airport operating scheduled jet services to implement bag and passenger screening. Now, regional airports will screen any person boarding an aircraft with seating for 90 or more passengers that is operated as part of a domestic air service, and screen any items carried on to such an aircraft by hand. In addition any flights two hours either side of a scheduled jet service that ordinarily would not be screened must also be screened if departing from the same apron and facilities.



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