NEC Corporation, NEC Corporation of America and the Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) Airports Division have announced that thermal temperature screening equipment is now in use to help detect passengers with a temperature of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius) and above.
HDOT and the NEC team, including NEC Corporation, NEC Corporation of America and their partner, Infrared Cameras Inc., have completed phase one of the project on schedule which included installation of the thermal temperature screening equipment at the gates currently in use to welcome arriving trans-Pacific flights at the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport (HNL), Kahului Airport (OGG), Lihue Airport (LIH), Ellison Onizuka Kona International Airport at Keahole (KOA) and Hilo International Airport (ITO).
“The thermal screening equipment is a positive feature that streamlines the process for people traveling to Hawaii, while also working to keep the community safe by detecting people with a fever,” said Gov. David Ige. “The equipment is a step in the direction of what will be the new normal as we move forward in the COVID-19 era.”
“I am incredibly proud of NEC’s ability to deploy our thermal screening technology quickly and efficiently while staying on budget,” said Jason Van Sice, Vice President of Aviation, NEC Corporation of America. “Phase one represents a significant step in protecting the health and safety of the visitors and residents of Hawaii against the COVID-19 pandemic. Not only does this technology enhance the overall travel experience, but it will help passengers regain confidence in air travel in the state of Hawaii.”
Hawaii National Guard, Joint Task Force Commander, Brig. Gen. Moses Kaoiwi, Jr. said: “The Hawaii National Guard is honoured to partner with the Department of Transportation on the front lines of screening visitors and returning residents as they arrive at Hawaii’s airports. Our Guardsmen are adept and will adjust well to the new temperature screening system and procedures that improves Hawaii’s mitigation efforts against COVID-19.”
Members of the Hawaii National Guard and HDOT employees have been trained statewide to operate and monitor the equipment. Passengers used to stop to have their temperature taken by hand held thermometers. Passengers are now able to deplane the aircraft without stopping. An alert on the monitor will appear if someone is detected to have a temperature of 100.4 degrees or higher. The Hawaii National Guard member or an airport representative will then pull that passenger aside for further evaluation.
American Medical Response (AMR) paramedics or the Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighting (ARFF) units stationed at the airport will verify the passenger’s temperature. The passenger will be offered a COVID-19 test and the person’s information will be collected to provide to the Hawaii Department of Health for contact tracing, if necessary.
Phase 2 of the project will install the temperature scanning equipment at the remaining gates and Phase 3 expects to have the facial imaging equipment installed by December 31, 2020. The NEC team is utilising the skills of Hawaii’s workforce with approximately 90 percent of the employees being local residents.
NEC and SITA announce partnership
This news follows last month’s separate announcement that NEC Corporation and SITA have entered a global partnership to develop market-leading solutions that enable a secure walk-through travel experience at airports, leveraging NEC’s I:Delight identity management platform together with SITA Smart Path and SITA Flex.
The partnership comes as airports and airlines increasingly look to low-touch and automated passenger processing in order to comply with new hygiene requirements following the global COVID-19 pandemic, in line with recommendations from Airports Council International and IATA.
Through the partnership SITA and NEC will further unlock the potential of seamless next-generation passenger processing solutions, making mobile enabled and touchless airport processes a reality. This will allow passengers to use their digital identity on their mobile phone whenever they travel at each step in the journey. Passengers will use their biometric identity to check-in, make payments, drop their bag, as well as pass through security, immigration and boarding by simply scanning their face at each step. Key touchpoints will automatically recognise you as a passenger, making steps such as bag drop and boarding effortless.
The two companies will collaborate to develop this ground-breaking solution by utilising both companies’ global presence in the market and the combination of technology for Common Use Platforms and Artificial Intelligence (AI) solutions.