Southampton Airport has become the first in the UK to bring a hand held laser bird scaring device into regular operation on the airfield following successful airside trials.
Continuing with our series from the airport we talk to Dan Townsend, Airside Assurance Manager.
Being a relatively small airfield, it’s important that vehicle movements across the runway are kept to a minimum, especially during periods of higher traffic, when the risk of bird strike increases. It’s also vital at these times that birds are dispersed quickly and the laser allows the airport to accurately disperse the birds in a safe direction, from a distance of up to 2km, the full length of the airfield.
Southampton Airport will use the laser in conjunction with the airport’s other active bird control measures which should reduce overall costs associated with pyrotechnics and ammunition. During the trial the operations team worked to develop a detailed risk assessment and to gather evidence on the effectiveness of the laser on a variety of different bird species.
In order to safely bring the laser into the daily operation a suite of safety management documents has been put together including a comprehensive training plan, local operating
Although it needs to be closer to the birds at dusk or dawn, it is still effective up to a distance of about 800m.