Big Island Coronavirus Updates

Thermal Temperature Screening Equipment Active in Hawai‘i Airports

August 6, 2020, 6:00 AM HST
* Updated August 6, 12:39 AM
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Thermal temperature screening equipment is now active in Hawai‘ airports.

The Hawai‘i Department of Transportation (HDOT) Airports Division announced the activation Wednesday afternoon. It will be used to help detect passengers with a temperature of 100.4° F 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, 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), Līhu‘e Airport (LIH), Ellison Onizuka Kona International Airport at Keāhole (KOA) and Hilo International Airport (ITO).

“The thermal screening equipment is a positive feature that streamlines the process for people traveling to Hawai‘i, 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.”

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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 handheld thermometers.

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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 above the acceptable threshold. The Hawai‘i 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 Hawai‘i Department of Health for contact tracing, if necessary.

Phase 2 of the project will install the temperature scanning equipment at the remaining gates by Aug. 20, 2020.

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Phase 3 expects to have the facial imaging equipment installed by Dec. 31, 2020. The NEC team is utilizing the skills of Hawaii’s workforce, with approximately 90% of the employees being local residents.

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