Evening Standard - Jonathan Prynn / Rhiannon Curry
Aviation bosses on Tuesday urged the Government to speed up the rate of security checks of staff to prevent the airport chaos of recent weeks blighting the peak summer season.
Airports, airlines and the Border Force are said to be hiring “tens of thousands” of extra employees to cope with the unexpectedly strong surge in bookings since most travel restrictions were lifted in February.
These range from flight crew to baggage handlers but also include Border Force immigration staff, all of whom have to gain clearance from UK Security Vetting, which is overseen by the Cabinet Office, before they are given the green light to start work by the Department for Transport (DfT).
The checks normally take 10 to 15 weeks but the sheer volume currently being processed has resulted in lengthy delays that have brought chaos to airports and forced airlines to cancel hundreds of flights.