Belfast Telegraph

CCTV was not operating at Belfast airport security hall

By Jonathan Bell

The CCTV system at Belfast International Airport's security hall was down for a period earlier this month, the Belfast Telegraph can reveal.

It is understood there was an issue with the recording element of the security camera system on Monday, November 20, although staff were still able to monitor screens.

DUP MP Paul Girvan described the system failure as “worrying”.

However, airport sources stressed security was at no time compromised and the system is now fully functioning again.

The shock finding was revealed by Northern Ireland nurse Holly Beattie. The 24-year-old was passing through the airport on her way to Glasgow to meet up with university friends.

During her security checks the Dundonald woman was asked to remove a Pandora charm bracelet on her wrist.

She was then subjected to the full range of security checks including passing through the metal detector, a body scanner, a body search by a member of the security team and her bag was also searched.

“I was worried I wouldn’t make the flight so it was only when I got to the gate that I realised the bracelet was gone,” Holly said.

“It is very dear to me. To lose it has been upsetting.”

When she returned, the lost item was not found and she reported it missing to the airport police.

“She was shocked when an officer called her on Friday to say they were unable find the bracelet or review any CCTV footage from the security hall as the system had not been working that day and they were working to have it fixed.

“I was surprised he told me that. You hear so much about terror attacks and that just didn’t sound right at all.

“It’s incredible to think that security cameras would not be working at a major international airport.”

Belfast International is in Mr Girvan’s constituency and he sits on the Commons transport committee.

“This is worrying in the light of what’s happened at other airports but I know the airport staff and management will do their utmost to ensure it won’t happen again,” he said.

“I feel for the woman passing through security who has lost her bracelet.

“But this has highlighted this issue and the public can be assured they were at all times protected and the issue has been resolved.

“It is a vitally important security measure, not just for the passengers but also for the staff.

“I have been assured at no time was security compromised and they were still able to monitor all that was going on through the security hall when the system was down.”

Belfast International Airport said it did not comment on security matters.

Belfast Telegraph

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