Feeds

Illegal immigrants spared the gamma-ray scanner

French ban Calais lorry probes

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

The French have banned Brit border guards at Calais from deploying immigrant-hunting gamma-ray scanners, claiming they breach EU health and safety regulations and can only be used with the intended targets' written permission.

According to the Evening Standard, the scanners have proved somewhat successful in cutting the numbers of illegals entering the UK via France, contributing to an 88 per cent reduction in those reaching Dover in 2006.

The machines, costing £2m a pop, sweep along the exterior of lorries, revealing any illicit human cargo within, but deliver "less than a thousandth of the background radiation" anyone in their path would normally receive in a year.

The French, however, scoured the newly-introduced "Euratom" regs, designed to protect the public from radiation, and decreed the scanners cannot not be used without the immigrants first agreeing to be irradiated.

The Evening Standard notes: "Given that the illegal immigrants do not want to be found, the chances of reaching such an agreement are zero, leaving the British no choice but to stop using the machines."

A British government spokesman said: "The UK does not think that is necessary and nor do the Belgians where we also operate one of these scanners. The gamma ray scanners emit less radiation than ordinary hospital X-rays - we can't see what the problem is."

The Brits have operated border controls in Calais since 2002, and also use thermal-imaging devices and carbon dioxide detectors to flush out undesirables. ®

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
FORGET the CLIMATE: FATTIES are a MUCH BIGGER problem - study
Fat guy? Drink or smoke? You're worse than a TERRORIST
Renewable energy 'simply WON'T WORK': Top Google engineers
Windmills, solar, tidal - all a 'false hope', say Stanford PhDs
Rosetta probot drilling DENIED: Philae has its 'LEG in the AIR'
NOT best position for scientific fulfillment
SEX BEAST SEALS may be egging each other on to ATTACK PENGUINS
Boffin: 'I think the behaviour is increasing in frequency'
HUMAN DNA 'will be FOUND ON MOON' – rocking boffin Brian Cox
Crowdfund plan to stimulate Blighty's space programme
Post-pub nosh neckfiller: The MIGHTY Scotch egg
Off to the boozer? This delicacy might help mitigate the effects
I'M SO SORRY, sobs Rosetta Brit boffin in 'sexist' sexy shirt storm
'He is just being himself' says proud mum of larger-than-life physicist
NASA launches new climate model at SC14
75 days of supercomputing later ...
LIFE, JIM? Comet probot lander found 'ORGANICS' on far-off iceball
That's it for God, then – if Comet 67P has got complex molecules
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence
Download Choosing a Cloud Hosting Provider with Confidence to learn more about cloud computing - the new opportunities and new security challenges.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.