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Old Aug 15th, 2010, 10:57 AM   41
summer rain
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Hi

I am so sorry Melissa, this is disgusting and beuracracy going too far. I'd understand if they did use some type of profiling for these scanners but apparently they don't; I have heard and read even on airports own documents regarding this that it is completely random. Therefore what if they picked on a heavily pregnant woman on a flight yet a terrorist went through? I don't see how randomly selecting people is going to catch anyone with a 'liquid bomb' and besides didn't they say the guy who tried to do that in the US probably wouldn't have been caught with one of these scanners? The government did recently do a consultation regarding the human rights and health issues around these scanners; hopefully it does lead to a change in the law. Its ridiculous how the US who did have a thwarted bomb attack that these scanners are meant to stop; are not going as overboard with them as in the UK where no such thing has happened.

Sophie



 
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Old Aug 15th, 2010, 13:24 PM   42
Mumiof2
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Wisewoman, can i ask which terminal you flew out of and with which airline?

I'm now back in work until next sat (21st) but i will do my best to find out as much info as i can for you. I know a few of the police officers and a lot of the higher management.

It is awful the way you were treated

If you would rather pm me, that fine hun xx



 
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Old Aug 15th, 2010, 13:58 PM   43
wisewoman
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Hello mumiof2,

I flew out of terminal 2 of Manchester airport yesterday, Saturday the 14th of August. I was flying with Air France to Paris on the 15:30 flight.

Do you work at the airport ? If so, can you possibly confirm what sort of radiation the scanner users? I understand there are two types - an x-ray back scatter 2d image scanner and a Scanner that uses radio waves. See here
tobefrank dot net/?cat=7

According to the above article, the Manchester ones are the ones that use x-rays. BUT the terminal manager, in a bid to reassure me, specifically said that it DID NOT use x-rays! I have witnesses to this conversation.

I was also concerned by the amount of children that were being scanned!

To my mind there simply has not been a long enough testing period and too many mixed opinions from various experts. At the end of the day I almost certainly took up more time of the various staff than if I had just been given a total strip search that I was happily prepared to do instead !

I would advise any pregnant woman travelling through Manchester or an airport where these scanners are in use to either a) not use these airports in the first place or b) stand by your feelings. Perhaps then the powers that be will agree to the 'old style' checks as ultimately being less time consuming and distressing for ALL concerned.

Surely I have the right to decide whether I and my unborn child are exposed to radiation!

Apologies for further rant. I am still upset by this and thank you very much mumiof. I look forward to hearing what you discover.

Melissa



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Old Aug 15th, 2010, 14:03 PM   44
Mumiof2
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Not a problem hun, leave it with me and i'll find out as much as i can for you.

Yes hun, i work for Virgin Holidays at Manchester Airport. Been working at the airport for over 7 years.

Was the Terminal DM a male or female?? xx



 
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Old Aug 15th, 2010, 14:23 PM   45
wisewoman
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The terminal manager was a woman who said she had two children. She was very polite and nice but the xray comment seems underhand to me.



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Old Aug 15th, 2010, 15:23 PM   46
vicky84
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They're harmless. I went through at 2 week and 13 week with my little girl. They're not xrays as such the rays are fine



 
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Old Aug 16th, 2010, 03:03 AM   47
wisewoman
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Hi,

I accept that the levels involved may ultimately prove no issue (certainly the American company who developed this scanner pushes this hard in it's literature). However I still feel it's technolgy in it's infancy. Also I understand that Xrays can affect DNA- any problems with which can take years to show up.

If there weren't so many medical professionals out there expressing concern over these scanners I guess I would feel better but the scientific "oops we didn't realise" process is nothing new. After all they used to regularly use a higher level of xray to 'scan' pregnant women then realised it was causing malformations and genetic disorders. This is just one hiccup in a long long list of technologies which didn't readily reveal their drawbacks until later.

At the end if the day i still think we should have a sensible degree
of personal choice, not the illusion of such.

Melissa



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Old Aug 16th, 2010, 09:37 AM   48
summer rain
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I totally agree Melissa; how many types of scans and procedures have they later realised to be dangerous? They even used to x-ray kids feet to measure them up until the 70s; they now realise this could obviously contribute to cancer later in life. Even 7 years ago when pregnant with my eldest; they gave me a doppler ultrasound early in pregnancy, at the time they thought it was a fantastic way of showing which pregnancies were viable and which were more likely to lead to inevitable miscarriage (I'd had a threatened miscarriage); now they do not do this type of scans before 20 weeks because they have realised they heat the amniotic fluid to such an extent it could actually lead to miscarriage or birth defects. My son did have a number of health problems when he was born which are all resolved now; he is perfectly normal and healthy but I do wonder if this particular scan may have contributed to some of them or if it may even cause him health issues in the future. I hope you get this sorted out and I hope this government clarifies the law so that no-one goes through this in the future. Again I just don't see how randomly scanning pregnant women and children is going to catch terrorists, while security experts have claimed terrorists will use these categories of people; no-one ever actually has.



 
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Old Aug 19th, 2010, 05:18 AM   49
wisewoman
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Further to my posts on this subject, it appears that recently The European Commission recommended that alternate screening methods should be "used on pregnant women, babies, children and people with disabilities"

Furthermore, the Inter-Agency Committee on Radiation Safety which includes the International Atomic Energy Agency, Nuclear Energy Agency and the World Health Organization, reported that, "Pregnant women and children should not be subject to scanning, even though the radiation dose from body scanners is 'extremely small'"

Add to this the human rights, civil liberties and nudity issues and it's clear that a storm is brewing over these scanners!

Melissa



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Old Aug 19th, 2010, 07:42 AM   50
summer rain
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Melissa keep us updated with what goes on. Btw there was a case recently in the US where law courts using these scanners were storing the images used (remember how it was claimed the images cannot even be stored?) as apparently these machines DO have a memory capacity; so they are leading people up the garden path with that one as well...



 
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