London: A top British lawmaker on Monday said he was appalled by the long immigration queues at Heathrow airport that would receive thousands of visitors for the London Olympics starting on July 27.
"I was appalled by the length of queues in the immigration hall this morning. It is now two months since the Immigration Minister promised additional resources and better management," Keith Vaz, chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee said after visiting Terminal 4 at 7 of Heathrow airport.
"The worst aspect was that half of the immigration desks were simply not opened even though the Border Force had prior knowledge of all flight arrivals. This creates additional security pressures with luggage piling up in the baggage hall," he said.
A top British lawmaker on Monday said he was appalled by the long immigration queues at Heathrow airport.
Heathrow is the fourth busiest airport in the world in terms of total passenger traffic, handling more international passengers than any other airport around the globe.
Long queues at immigration days before the Olympics begin have been often reported in the news media, with promises that extra staff were being trained or recruited for the flagship event of the year.
Immigration minister Damian Green, who will appear before the Home Affairs Select Committee tomorrow, has defended the Government's record, insisting there had been significant improvements in the last two months.
He said: "But we're not complacent about some long waiting times, which is why this weekend we have increased staffing numbers by more than 50 per cent at Heathrow to respond to large passengers volumes."
Green added: "And by the start of peak Olympic arrivals in less than 10 days, there will be up to 500 additional staff on our rotas across the country this includes enough staff at Heathrow to cover every desk during busy times".
Special lanes had been designated for Olympic athletes to enable them to pass through immigration without delay, he said.