Manchester news Travelling through Manchester Airport has changed because of coronavirus Manchester united news
MetiNews.Com - "For people coming through the terminal, they are gonna see a lot of changes"
Breaking News ! A cleaner in a hazmat suit blasts disinfectant onto a check-in conveyor belt while a masked family pushing a trolley full of luggage joins the queue at check-in. Manchester Airport is gradually reopening to passengers as the UK emerges from lockdown. Things are getting back to normal... kind of. As more flights resume, with the reopening of Terminal 3 tomorrow (July 1) and Terminal 2 on July 15, travellers will notice some changes across the airport. It is far quieter than usual - June usually marks the beginning of peak holiday season - but only half a dozen passengers are sat outside Terminal 1 on Tuesday, while most shops and check-in desks remain closed. Vending machines on the ground floor are now filled with hand sanitisers and masks, not the usual stock of cans of coke and crisps. Face mask and hand sanitiser vending machine (Image: Manchester Evening News) Signs adorn the walls across the terminal building urging people to maintain social distancing, while tannoy announcements repeat the same message at regular intervals. Passengers have their temperatures checked at security. Staff are testing the thermal screening equipment in case temperature checks are mandated by the government. Read More Related Articles How to check which businesses are open near you A new option to pre-book a 15-minute time slot for security is now available too. An airport worker next to a sign (Image: Manchester Evening News) "For people coming through the terminal, they are gonna see a lot of changes", says chief operating officer Brad Miller. "Probably the most visible is face coverings. So we (MAG) were the first airport group to insist on everybody wearing face coverings. "All of our staff has been fantastic. You are going to see a lot of signage, you're going to hear a lot more announcements. "You're gonna see the different cleaning teams in different uniforms using brand new equipment that we've invested so we can aerosol all of the disinfectant so we can cover much wider areas. A passenger at the airport (Image: Manchester Evening News) "We can follow the passenger journey through the airport. After one set of passengers has departed, we will make sure that we are following where they have been, so the next set know that everywhere is disinfected." New sealants have been placed on hard surfaces like lift buttons and security trays, which kill 'all types of viruses including Covid-19', Mr Miller says. Some passengers may still be worried about travelling despite the safety measures, the Manchester Evening News points out. "I can understand why people are nervous. After three or four months of lockdown, I find it bizarre walking past people. But the thing that I take comfort from is we have followed all of the government guidelines, we have done risk assessments across the entire group. "We decided to take the lead in asking all our staff to wear face masks, it gives me the confidence as an individual, as a human being, to say with confidence, it's safe to fly through Manchester Airport." A sign reminding people to wear face coverings (Image: Manchester Evening News) The reopening of the airport, after it was reduced to operating a skeleton service during lockdown, is a relief for Mr Miller. During the pandemic, they have seen a reduction in 99pc of passengers.
. "I can't do the maths of 99pc of three million but it is down an incredible amount", he adds. It was tough having to scale back their operation earlier this year. "It was really sad. We've not had to shut our airspace overnight since we opened. When we shut Terminal 2, we lost all the keys. "It's open 24/7 so you never have to think about locking it, so we had to replace all the locks. That was pretty depressing. "Compared to people being ill it wasn't that bad. But equally it was heartwarming to see people come together.
(Image: Manchester Evening News)
"We made the decision within about three or four days so to see us react that quickly and do it safely was a credit to the team." Within the aviation industry in general, it is well known that many redundancies have been made due to a reduction in flights. Are there any plans over the coming months to cut jobs at the airport when the furlough scheme ends?
"It has been well publicised what some of the airlines and ground handling teams are doing. From a MAG perspective, our focus has been on safe and secure operations. Then second to that has been the long term success of Manchester Airport and our sister airports. "We've been working really hard on managing our cost base, we've been lobbying government to make sure they don't forget about the aviation package that they've promised, that's hugely important. We are one of the last industries to come out of lockdown. "But airports, they have massive fixed cost bases. I think we are the biggest contributor to business rates in the region and we are continuing to have to pay that, but 99pc of all our revenues have disappeared.
(Image: Manchester Evening News)
"We are continuing to work with central government on a solution to that and other things, like our police costs. We pay for all of our police here. GMP have been brilliant to reduce that cost. "Furlough has helped massively but it accounts for about five to six percent of the annual costs of employees. "We are not contemplating redundancies because we went into this financially very very strong. But there is no business in the world that can suffer months on end of losing almost all of its revenue. We will continue to work with managing the cost base and we will put off those decisions about redundancies for as long as possible." But what if there's a second wave, do they feel prepared? "We've got the plans now. So we've got the new keys for T2 so we can lock it now. Sadly now we know how to close our terminals, so we can do it no problem", he adds.
Source = MetiNews.Com