Manchester Airport staff ban photographer's lens-cleaning device from flight 'because it looked like a hand grenade'

Noel Patterson was told any item that 'looks like a grenade' is prohibited

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The Independent Travel

A photographer had his lens-cleaning device confiscated by security at Manchester Airport over concerns the device looked like a hand grenade.

Noel Patterson, a sports photographer from Derbyshire, said he was going through security to board a flight to Reykjavik when he was stopped by staff.

He told Amateur Photographer his bag was scanned and the lens-cleaning air blower raised concerns among staff, who allegedly told him any item that looked like a grenade was banned from planes.

The air blower is used to prevent dust and dirt gathering on camera equipment.

“The guard went to the supervisor to check and then said that any object that could be held up and look like a grenade was prohibited - even though everyone obviously knew it wasn't,” he said.

“While I was aware that you now have to be able to switch on all devices, if asked to do so, I did not know there was a restriction on carrying items that could be considered to look like a grenade.

“I had the option of going back through security and posting it back home. Otherwise, it would be confiscated – which was the only practical choice.”

A Manchester airport spokesman did not comment directly on the incident, but said: “We would recommend passengers do not carry items through security that look like or could resemble weapons, whether this be lighters shaped liked guns, or even pieces of kit or electrical items that could potentially look threatening.

“During these heightened times we advise all passengers to be ready for security and to work with our staff who are on hand to help and assist.”