Saudis to provide Naia with x-ray machines
THE Manila International Airport Authority ( Miaa) approved on Wednesday the request of the Saudi government to put up x- ray machines at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport ( Naia) Terminal 1 for the Saudis’ own protection against possible threat.
Miaa Assistant General Manager for Security and Emergency Services Jesus Gordon Descanzo said the x- ray machines are expected to arrive from Riyadh next month.
The machines will be flown onboard a Saudia Airlines plane.
The Saudi Embassy in Manila earlier notified the Department of Foreign Affairs ( DFA) that the Saudi government “received from concerned authorities that the Iranian Revolutionary Guards are allegedly initiating and supervising a plan to hijack or bomb a Saudi Arabian aircraft, and the said plan is alleged to have reached to an advanced stage.”
Meanwhile, Office of Transportation Security (OTS) personnel who man the initial and final security checks at the Naia terminals started to use the EQO body scanners that can detect even small amounts of explosives in response to the call of the Saudi government to intensify body and luggage inspection.
Also in response to the request of the Saudi government, Descanzo called the attention of the OTS to intensify its body and luggage inspection of all departing passengers at the airport, especially Saudi- bound passengers.
The OTS already require all departing passengers to empty their pockets, remove their watches, shoes, wallet and belts and place these in a plastic tray for scanning.
The passengers, on the other hand, are subjected to a body scan that requires 30 seconds to 40 seconds per passenger. In addition, passengers are made to pass a walk- through metal detector before being allowed to the departure area.
Smith Detection of Singapore, supplier of the said scanner, has trained several OTS personnel, airport police and other technical staff on how to operate the detectors, but OTS personnel are the only ones authorized to operate scanners.
The Miaa bought 14 body scanners for P12 million each and installed them in July 2015 in the four Naia terminals.
Screeners from the OTS said they have been using the body scanners since last week.
“These new scanners will greatly help us in detecting explosive materials even in small amounts and even when planted inside the body,” an OTS employee said.