How risky is flying during a coronavirus pandemic?
Flights can increase the risk of infection, but airlines take some precautions, and you can too.
Air travel means spending time in security lines and airport terminals, allowing you to be in close contact with other people. As the journey gradually recovers, the planes are becoming more crowded, which means that you are likely to sit next to other people, often for several hours, which increases your risk.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, while on an airplane, most viruses and other germs do not spread easily due to air circulating. Airlines also say they focus on the disinfection of hard surfaces that passengers usually touch.
Some airlines, such as Alaska, Delta, JetBlue, and Southwest, block middle places or limit bandwidth. But even if every middle seat is empty, you are likely to be closer than the recommended distance of 6 feet to another passenger as the planes become more full.
American, United and Spirit now book flights to full power when they can. All major US airlines require passengers to wear masks. Lauren Ansel Meyers, an expert on outbreaks of disease at the University of Texas, says this can help reduce risk.
For air travel and all other types of transport CDC recommends wash hands, maintain social distance and wear face masks.
Several airlines announced Monday that they would ask passengers about the possible symptoms of COVID-19 and whether they contacted someone who tested positive for the virus in the previous two weeks.
However, Meyers said you can still think about whether you need to fly this plane. “We should all be set up“ only when necessary ”and always take all possible precautions to protect ourselves and others,” she said.
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