18 MAY 2020
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Heathrow is set to introduce trial screening in immigration at Terminal 2 later this week.
In a statement released over the weekend it once again emphasised that a blanket quarantine approach would prolong economic uncertainty (see COMMENT and Heathrow’s dreadful April in this issue). The airport has worked with the Department for Transport to develop a proposal for a risk-based model that has been successfully implemented in Hong Kong.
From this week, all Heathrow staff will be wearing face coverings and the airport will be passing out face coverings to any arriving and departing passenger who would like one. This is in addition to over 600 hand sanitiser stations, enhanced cleaning routines, prominent signage featuring government health advice, clear barriers for frontline contact points and social distancing reminders.
“Quarantine cannot be applied as a ‘one size fits all’ or indefinitely – a risk-based “travel corridor” approach can safeguard public health and boost the economy – We agree that all steps must be taken to protect the progress made by the UK in getting this virus under control. But closing our borders to all, will be closing Britain to business.”
All comments are filtered to exclude any excesses but the Editor does not have to agree with what is being said. 100 words maximum
Keith Wallis, Canterbury
Itís about time Heathrow (and all other UK gateways) had health screening, although it is a little like shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted. One of my gripes about the handling of the Coronavirus crisis is that, on the surface at least, little attempt was made to seek advice from authorities in Asia, particularly Hong Kong, on how they tackled SARS 17 years ago. Only now are we starting to see health screening, surfaces like handrails and elevator buttons regularly cleaned and sanitised. These should have been instituted from the start.