Baggage PIN may stop lost luggage

PUBLISHED: 15:25 13 June 2007 | UPDATED: 21:43 29 May 2010

Dave Pearce with his baggage PIN – Pic: Sarah Lucy Brown

Dave Pearce with his baggage PIN – Pic: Sarah Lucy Brown

LOSING your luggage at the airport could be a thing of the past thanks to one innovative man from Dunmow. Dave Pearce, from Woodlands Park Drive, has worked with colleagues at Bytec Solutions Ltd for six months to develop an owner identification service t

LOSING your luggage at the airport could be a thing of the past thanks to one innovative man from Dunmow.

Dave Pearce, from Woodlands Park Drive, has worked with colleagues at Bytec Solutions Ltd for six months to develop an owner identification service that he hopes will be taken up by airlines throughout the world.

"We've called it Baggage PIN and it's a simple concept," he explained. "First of all, you have to subscribe to the system online by going to www.baggagepin.com paying anything from £6 for one month's membership up to £12 for a full year. Once that is done, you are allocated an authenticated unique digital code and sent a corresponding code tag and security strap in the post which can be securely attached to each of your suitcases. We have developed tags with Braille that are available for those travellers who may need them."

The data keyed in by members can be accessed by authorised airline system users, which currently can only be accessed by Baggage PIN, giving the airlines the information they have previously lacked to take the necessary steps to return lost baggage to the legal owner or forward on to the required destination. This information also includes the preferred method of being contacted, so, even if several months have gone past since the bags went missing, they can be reunited with their owners.

Mr Pearce said: "We are currently in talks with some of the major UK airline companies to fully adopt Baggage PIN as the method of finding the legal owners of mislaid baggage. Baggage PIN even offers an inbuilt SMS system allowing baggage handling agents to contact the owners of mislaid baggage quickly and free of charge."

It is thought the new service is also likely to prove to be popular with insurance companies who deal with a growing number of claims each year resulting in escalating premiums.

If it proves a success, Mr Pearce hopes it could also be applied to operators of other forms of travel, such as rail, coach and ferry.

According to data from the Associate of European Airlines (AEA), across the 24 largest airlines more than 5.6 million bags went missing in 2006, an average of 15.7 bags per 1,000 travellers.

Bytec Solutions Ltd is a group of computer technologists who are particularly experienced in creating and analysing secure data systems, in conjunction with baggage handlers at various airports.

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