Manchester’s airport has said it will continue to use body scanners while the EU tests the devices for health risks.

Airport news for UK Airports on 17/11/2011.

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The news comes after the UK Health Protection Agency said that the scanners posed a ‘negligible’ risk to the health of passengers. However, EU officials have since commissioned its specialised heath committee to test the x-ray machines to ensure they are safe despite the findings from UK and US health authorities. The European Commission is due to release a report on the matter in March of next year.

And Manchester airport officials said this week that it would continue utilising the devices after it was given permission to continue doing so through November of 2012.

The machines create ‘naked’ images of airline passengers by using x-rays to scan through clothing in the effort of identifying weapons and potential security threats. According to the UK Health Protection Agency, the scanners only subject passengers to an x-ray dose equivalent to the dose they would receive in just two minutes of flying on a commercial jet at cruising altitude.

A spokesman for the airport said in a statement that the suggestion that passengers should be concerned because the EU’s own tests were not yet complete was ‘irresponsible’. He added that both US health authorities and the UK Health Protection Agency had already concluded that any threat to public health caused by the machines was ‘negligible’.

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