The plot that changed the way we fly

The airliner plot is the reason why millions of air passengers are now restricted on how much liquid they can take on board a plane.



Current rules state that travellers can only carry 100ml containers on to an aircraft and the bottles or tubs must fit into a re-sealable bag measuring 20cm by 20cm.

At first a complete ban on liquids was brought in on 10 August, 2006 - the day after the terror plot gang was arrested - but this was later relaxed.

Major airlines and the British Airports Authority have since called for the rules to be further eased or reviewed.

The restrictions have cost the aviation industry millions - extra security staff taken on by the British Airports Authority cost around £16 million per year when the rules were brought in.

A spokeswoman for Virgin Airlines said new technology could now make the restrictions unnecessary.

"While the security of passengers is the highest priority for airlines and governments, Virgin Atlantic believes that the restrictions on hand luggage and liquids should be kept under constant review," she said.

"With better technology coming on stream, it is appropriate to review the restrictions to ensure passengers are able to make as easy a journey as possible through airport security checks."

Scanners are being trialled which could identify substances such as hydrogen peroxide - a chemical that can be mixed with other ingredients to produce explosives - removing the need for restrictions.

British Airways said it backed thorough screening but wanted to see the same rules to be applied worldwide.

A spokeswoman for the airline said: "We always support rigorous security screening on the ground.

"It is important that security procedures are harmonised internationally to avoid confusion and make compliance easier.

"It would be unhelpful to maintain a liquid ban at some airports and not at others."

Industry body the British Air Transport Association said it wants air travel to be made "easier" for passengers.

A spokesman said: "We are keen to see more flexibility on the carriage of liquids but that will depend on the security regime being able to deal with that.

"It's very much a technological issue for the people who deal with security.

"We are keen to make air travel as normal as other forms of travel.

"There are still some anomalies and there are still people that feel hard done by and we just want travellers to get a better deal.

"This is an international regime and we are looking to make it easier for people in future, but we are in the hands of the those who deal with the security regime."

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