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Body Scanner Safety Confirmed In EU Report

RapiScan Systems : 09 May, 2012  (Technical Article)
Rapiscan comments on EU Scientific Committee report on the safety of dosage levels in backscatter x-ray based body scanning systems
Body Scanner Safety Confirmed In EU Report
Rapiscan Systems has announced that the latest report published by the European Union’s Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Identified Health Risks (SCENIHR), confirms that the use of backscatter X-ray technology in body scanners is safe to use at security checkpoints. This report was written by an independent committee of top European scientists and supports previous studies carried out by the UK Government and the French Government in 2011, as well as several reports conducted by the United States Government; all these studies have concluded that the technology used in Rapiscan’s body scanners poses no measurable risk to the public, to operators or to aviation employees.

The SCENIHR reports states that, with respect to the Secure 1000:

* The doses delivered by backscatter X-ray scanners are too low to cause any observable effects on the human body
* The dose levels are too low to form a scientific basis for making any quantitative risk estimates

The SCENIHR committee report was written by scientific experts from the International Agency for Research on Cancer, the University of Oxford, the Paul Scherrer Institute, the University of Sofia, Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Santé Publique, the UK Health Protection Agency, St James Hospital, Dublin and the Helmholtz Zentrum (Munich, Germany).

“The SCENIHR report’s conclusions are consistent with the findings of every independent expert that has assessed the actual technology and the evidence: backscatter X-ray scanners are safe for use at airports and all other high-traffic, high-security public venues,” said Peter Kant, executive vice president for Rapiscan Systems. “After repeated tests, studies and assessments by independent and federal authorities across the globe, the conclusion remains the same: backscatter X-ray machines are completely safe for people screening. Rapiscan’s Secure 1000 is the most effective people screening technology currently available, with both a high detection and low false alarm rate; perhaps most importantly of all, the technology is, once again, completely safe.”

Mr Kant continued, “Given the report’s unambiguous findings, we believe there is no scientific basis for opposition to the deployment of backscatter-based body scanners. In fact, considering the demonstrated superiority of backscatter technology in terms of passenger throughput, privacy protection and threat detection, we believe the Secure 1000 is an essential component of a layered and risk-based approach to aviation security.”

The Secure 1000 uses advanced backscatter technology and proprietary image processing software to rapidly detect potential threats that may be concealed on individuals at security checkpoints. Following rigorous testing, the Secure 1000 has been approved for use by multiple regulators, including the U.S. Transportation Security Administration and the United Kingdom Department for Transport and complies with U.S. and international health and safety requirements.
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