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Beijing airport adapting to security delays

(Beijing News)

15:24, August 30, 2011

Edited and translated by Yaochun, People's Daily Online

Queuing times increased at airport security on Aug. 28, the day when the main airports in China implemented greater security measures, including checks requiring passengers to take off shoes, remove belts and open baggage.

However, after a day of adapting to the heightened security, the orderliness of the security check at Beijing Capital International Airport improved markedly yesterday. The airport advises passengers catching flights in the morning peak hours to arrive at the airport at least two hours in advance to avoid delays caused by the security check.

Yesterday at 2:00 p.m., Beijing Airport Terminal T3 had passed its peak hours and about 15 people were waiting at each security check entrance for domestic flights. Based on a rough estimate, every passenger has to spend 30 or 40 seconds to do a security check after queuing 12 minutes, which is longer than the normal time.

"Please take off your shoes to do a security check," a safety examiner said to an elderly passenger who cooperated well and took off his thick leather boots. Previously, passengers for domestic flights rarely had to do this kind of security check.

During the course of half an hour at this security check channel, three passengers were required to weigh their baggage, while two were asked to open their luggage for a detailed inspection. Because few people are queuing up for the check, the slowdown in the check has not lengthened the waiting time and the security check area is in good order.

"Yesterday morning many people queued for a long time in the rush hours and about 70 domestic flights were delayed and many passengers failed to catch their fights due to the upgrade of the security check. Today we have taken a range of measures and the situation is improving," said a ground service staff member of Air China.

He said that in order to improve the security check efficiency, they will try to persuade passengers to check baggage in rather than carry it on board.

The reporter randomly interviewed three passengers carrying baggage to the boarding gate who said they all knew about the upgrades to the security check and made sure to arrive at the airport early.

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