The Abu Dhabi General Authority for Health Services (GAHS) announced here yesterday that the installation of the new thermal screen at Abu Dhabi Airport's Gate 14 has been completed.

The device will help screen travellers from the SARS-affected countries and detect anyone carrying symptoms of the deadly disease.

Ahmed Al Rumaithi, Director of GAHS, said the device will enhance the already strict preventive measures implemented at the airport and all entry ports throughout the country.

According to the official, the machine is a very accurate mobile infrared camera connected to a computer system. The infrared camera is one of the best in the world for detecting any passenger having a temperature of 38 degrees Celsius and above, one of the main symptoms of the virus.

Any such case will be counter checked for temperature through a timpanic thermometer. If the test is positive the passenger will be isolated and taken to the airport clinic. Here the medical staff will carry all the required medical tests.

Al Rumaithi added the device can operate for long hours and store a large number of pictures.

The manufacturing company will soon dispatch experts to provide training to the medical staff at the airport clinic on how to operate it. This equipment is also used in physiotherapy.

This will help detect passengers without slowing down the arrival procedures. Prior to this travellers were being screened by the medical staff on arrival.

The heat scanners will facilitate their job and ensure a more accurate screening of all the passengers entering the airport and help screen more passenger in less time.