The future of airport cleaning? Robots that use UV light to kill viruses and bacteria are being deployed at Heathrow in fight against Covid-19
- London Heathrow is using ultraviolet cleaning robots to maintain cleanliness
- The machines help to kill viruses and bacteria at the airport during night hours
- The use of robots is a bid to inspire more people to travel during the pandemic
- Robots help disinfect moving handrails and other surfaces used by customers
Ultraviolet (UV) cleaning robots are being deployed at Heathrow as the airport tries to encourage passengers to return to air travel.
The airport said the machines use UV rays to kill viruses and bacteria at night.
It is also using UV technology to continuously disinfect moving handrails, and coating surfaces such as security trays, lift buttons and trolley handles with a material providing long-lasting anti-viral protection.
Ultraviolet robots (pictured) which kill viruses and bacteria overnight are being used at London Heathrow airport
Around 100 airport workers are being retrained to serve as hygiene technicians to boost cleaning and answer passenger queries on the methods being used.
Heathrow has previously introduced screens in security areas and in some shops, made face coverings compulsory and created one-way systems.
Just 350,000 people travelled through the airport last month, down 95% on June 2019, as the coronavirus pandemic continues to limit demand for air travel.
The quarantine requirement was lifted for people returning to or visiting the UK from around 75 countries and territories on Friday.
The robots have been deployed to encourage more people to travel amid the global coronavirus pandemic
Among the robots’ tasks is to disinfect moving handrails (pictured) and other services most-used by passengers and customers
Other means have also been adopted by Heathrow, including hand sanitation, to improve health and safety in one of the UK’s busiest airport
Heathrow wants arrivals from countries not on the list to be allowed to avoid self-isolating for 14 days if they pass a coronavirus test on arrival.
Chief executive John Holland-Kaye said: ‘We have reviewed the entire Heathrow Airport experience to ensure that our passengers and colleagues are kept safe as travel resumes to ‘green’ and ‘amber’ countries.
‘Now we need Government to safely restore Britain’s long-haul connections as the country prepares for life outside the EU, with common international standards for Covid testing from ‘red’ countries.’