Travel Alert: Customs gets smarter in Abu Dhabi

Inspection of cars on left and f trucks on right - AS&E

Abu Dhabi Customs launches screening device for tourist vehicles

By Rajive Singh

ABU DHABI: The General Administration of Customs – Abu Dhabi has launched a new device for scanning and inspecting tourist vehicles transiting through Khatm Al Shikla in Al Ain city.

New lanes at Al Madheef Customs Centre have also been added, in order to serve passengers and facilitate their entry to the country, bringing up the total number of tracks to four.

Mohamed Khadem Al Hameli, Acting Director-General of the General Administration of Customs – Abu Dhabi, launched the (Z Portal) device. The device was produced by American Science and Engineering Inc. (AS&E).

The Z Portal device is one of the latest developments in systems used globally for scanning and inspecting tourist cars from hood to trunk using radioactive rays. Also, the device has the ability to examine and scan 120 cars in an hour. This helps accelerate and facilitate travel procedures, without compromising security and therefore, preventing illegal operations in the country, Wam reported.

Devices, such as the Z portal, have the ability to penetrate the vehicle to reveal all its contents besides identifying banned and prohibited substances without any negative impact on the vehicle, or any of the foods items and people inside it. Likewise, it has no negative impact on the people operating the device.

Al Hameli revealed that the number of vehicles inspected by the Z Portal device during 2012 was 1.5 million. This figure increased by 65 per cent in 2016, due to the device’s usage at Al Ghuwaifat Customs Center.

Furthermore, Al Hameli explained that all customs inspection officials employed at Abu Dhabi Customs are Emirati citizens. They are constantly being trained, via specialized classes, to analyse and compare photos taken through scanning devices with information provided in advance. Performance accuracy and speed of delivery are also taken into consideration.

New Lanes

He also inaugurated the new checkpoint lanes at Al Madheef Customs Centre in Al Ain, which have expedited the inspection of tourist cars and passenger paperwork processes.

Al Hameli further elaborated: “Al Madheef customs centre had issues with congestion due to the availability of only two lanes for passengers entering the UAE, with up to 4,500 tourist vehicles arriving daily. Thus, we have increased the number of lanes at checkpoints to four, resulting in a smoother, easier and more thorough process of inspection and registration of each vehicle. This upgrade has also led to better passenger control and faster traffic flows.”