Scientists at the University of Florida in Gainesville have developed an airport baggage scanner that uses ultraviolet (UV) light to help uncover explosives in checked airline baggage. The new system compares the specific colors of UV light absorbed as bags pass beneath the scanner along the conveyor belt. The new technology works with existing airport X-ray conveyor belts and, according to its developer, is able to scan 100 percent of luggage for explosives with 95-percent accuracy.
A cargo loader beneath a Moroccan Boeing 767 caught fire November 5 shortly after the aircraft’s arrival at Montreal Pierre Trudeau International Airport last week. Ground crews had just begun unloading passenger bags when a conveyor belt pushed against the aircraft’s cargo door overheated, igniting the blaze. Two of the 250 passengers aboard were treated for smoke inhalation while five others were transported to hospital with varying injuries. A phone camera video recorded some of the efforts to evacuate passengers.
A five-month-old boy was killed in an accident at Alicante Airport (LEAL) in southeast Spain after his mother left him alone on a baggage conveyor belt that she apparently believed to be inactive at the time. An initial review of airport security-camera footage suggested the conveyor was activated by the weight of the baby being placed upon it.