What does a cabin bag search comprise of?
If the security operative is looking for a prohibited item(s) they will conduct a full search of the contents of your bag and the bag itself. This will be a methodical hand search undertaken by a security operative who will examine all items in your bag, which will include clothing, laundry items, toiletry bags and any other contents, bags, or containers.
Any prohibited items found will be removed and confiscated. If you have someone in the terminal building who could take the item for you, you may leave the security cordon to pass it to them. You will then re-join the end of the queue. Police Scotland may be contacted to assist with the prohibited or dangerous item.
If your bag has been selected due to a restricted item being present, this item will be removed from the bag. Both the item and your bag will then be rescreened separately by the X-ray equipment.
If the X-ray operator has been unable to view a suitable image of the contents of your bag, the security operative will undertake a hand search of the contents and bag itself. This will be a methodical hand search undertaken by a security operative who will examine all items in your bag, which will include clothing, laundry items, toiletry bags and any other contents, bags, or containers. A sample paper swab will also be taken to the inside of the bag and any appropriate items.
If your bag has been selected at random, the security operative will take a sample using a paper swab, which is used to detect prohibited chemical substances. The swab will be run along areas inside your bag and items that it contains. In addition, the security operative may take a random sample test of liquids under 100ml or complete a visual check of containers holding powders (e.g., baby milk, coffee, talc).
If your liquids are randomly selected for testing, this will involve the security operative selecting an appropriate liquid container and testing its contents.
Any items tested that deliver a positive result will be retested, if it produces a positive result again it will be confiscated.
Random checks are part of the regular testing that we must carry out to meet specific UK regulatory requirements. These testing requirements are the same at every UK airport. However, the equipment in place at our airport may vary from other airports. The equipment and different types of security checks in place at our airport meet the regulatory requirement for an airport of our size.
Guidelines for restricted and banned items within hold baggage can be found on the Civil Aviation Authority website - Guidelines for checked in and carry on bags | Civil Aviation Authority (caa.co.uk)