The Bureau of Customs (BOC) has installed a new set of x-ray machines in the hope of implementing stricter border security nationwide.
In a news statement issued on Tuesday, the BOC said it had purchased six new upgraded x-ray machines from Astrophysics Inc., a US company based in Southern California.
Of the six units, BOC said two are for the Port of Manila, two for the Manila International Container Port, one for Port of Davao and another one for Port of Cebu.
“[This] is in line with BOC’s commitment to strengthen border security measure by increasing its nonintrusive inspection capabilities of containerized shipments,” BOC said. The newly acquired modern x-ray machines can scan at least 120 containers per hour, the BOC statement added, and these are also equipped with material discrimination capability allowing x-ray image analysts to distinguish organic and inorganic materials. The capacity of these machines makes image analysis of x-ray inspectors more accurate in their decision-making process.
The BOC added that the x-ray machines have lower radiation dose ensuring the safety of x-ray workers, as well as the transacting public who may be exposed to radiation.
“The x-ray scanners are expected to further enhance the capability of BOC in detecting smuggled and anti-social goods like misdeclared items, undervalued goods, non-declared goods, as well as the entry of narcotics in various ports nationwide,” BOC said.
Further, these machines will also enable the rapid and effective screening of containerized shipments with minimum interruption to the movement of goods inside the ports.
Designed for ease of operation and maintenance, the x-ray scanners are expected to minimize unnecessary delays and enhance trade facilitation.