Major UK airports including London Heathrow (LHR/EGLL), London Gatwick (LGW/EGKK) and Manchester (MAN/EGCC) are likely to miss the deadline for lifting the 100ml liquid restriction for passengers due to delays with scanner upgrades.
The limit is due to be lifted in June 2024 but airports say it is unlikely they will have the upgrades in place and online until 2025.
The new computed tomography (CT) scans provide clear and accurate 3D images allowing for liquids to be seen and also reduces the need for electrical items to be removed from hand luggage for scanning.
Some smaller airports including London City (LCY/EGCC) and Teesside (MME/EGNV) along with Shannon and Donegal in Ireland have already got the new CT scanners online.
It is unlikely that the Department for Transport (DfT) will left the restriction until the scanners are available at all airports.
Once they are in place liquids up to 2 litres will be able to carried in hand luggage.
Heathrow Airport has to upgrade 146 security lanes to meet the new specification at an estimated cost of around £1bn.
A spokesperson for the DfT said: “The UK has some of the most robust aviation security measures in the world and this cutting-edge technology will enhance security and boost the passenger experience.
“We are in regular contact with airports as they move towards June 2024 deadline for upgrading their screening equipment and processes. For security reasons we don’t talk in detail about aviation security measures.”
The UK’s second biggest airport, Gatwick said that it will have some scanners online by June 2024 but work will not be complete until Spring 2025.