Left Menu
Development News Edition

Australia's Qantas to provide in-flight masks but will not leave seats vacant

Reuters | Sydney | Updated: 19-05-2020 06:36 IST | Created: 19-05-2020 05:39 IST
Australia's Qantas to provide in-flight masks but will not leave seats vacant
Representative Image Image Credit: Flickr

Qantas Airways Ltd said on Tuesday it would introduce new measures on board such as providing masks and cleaning wipes to ensure safe travel and give passengers peace of mind during the pandemic but it would not leave middle seats empty. Catering will be simplified, aircraft cleaning will be stepped up and passengers will be asked to limit movement around the cabin once seated as part of the new measures to be put in place from June 12, the airline said.

Masks will not be mandatory but Qantas will recommend that passengers wear them in the interest of everyone's peace of mind, it said. Qantas Group Medical Director Dr Ian Hosegood said social distancing, such as leaving the middle seat empty, was not practical on board, and the airline did not believe it was needed given the low transmission risk.

"The data shows that actual risk of catching coronavirus on an aircraft is already extremely low," he said. "That's due to a combination of factors, including the cabin air filtration system, the fact people don't sit face-to-face and the high backs of aircraft seats acting as a physical barrier." His comments come as jet manufacturers and airlines are launching an urgent initiative to convince nervous travellers that the air they breathe on planes is safe, believing this is critical to rebuilding the travel industry.

Qantas has grounded all of its international flights until at least the end of July with the exception of government charters, but it expects domestic demand could start picking up sooner as restrictions ease. Australia's states and territories are beginning to allow more public activity under a three-step government plan after two months of shutdowns that officials have credited with keeping the country's exposure to the pandemic relatively low.

Australia has reported 99 COVID-19 deaths from 7,060 infections. Qantas said 98% of its frequent flyers are planning their next trip once restrictions lift.


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

COVID-19 seems cooking biggest ever global scam

The increasing number of corruption cases on COVID-19 funds from throughout the world and involvement of high profile persons indicate that the countries cant ignore corruption in their pandemic response programs. This has generated the nee...

Health Management Information Systems lack holistic, integrated, and pandemic resilient character

Being a part of the United Nations system, the World Health Organization WHO deserves its share of rebuke for its alleged failure issue COVID-19 health emergency alerts on appropriate time. However, the pandemic has also exposed loopholes i...

Pride in the time of coronavirus: a welcome move online?

This year is different in many ways not least as celebrations are also taking place against the dramatic backdrop of a global health crisis and a resurgence in grassroots activism following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. ...

COVID-19: Weighing up the benefits and limitations of edtech platforms

Edtech companies shouldnt focus on merely pushing contents, but to provide an interactive, effective teaching and learning environment. ...

Videos

Latest News

Baseball-Dodgers' Price opts out of 2020 season delayed by COVID-19

Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher David Price said on Saturday he has decided not to play in Major League Baseballs coronavirus-delayed 2020 season to protect his and his familys health. Price, a five-times All-Star and former Cy Young Award winn...

Dodgers LHP Price opts out of 2020 season

Left-hander David Price will not play for the Los Angeles Dodgers in his first year with the team, as he announced Saturday he is opting out of the shortened 2020 season. Dear Dodgers Nation, Price wrote in a statement on Twitter. After con...

Baseball-Dodgers' Price opts out of 2020 season delayed by COVID-19

Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher David Price said on Saturday he has decided not to play in Major League Baseballs coronavirus-delayed 2020 season to protect his and his familys health. Price, a five-time All-Star and former Cy Young Award winne...

Florida, Texas both post record daily increases in coronavirus cases

Florida and Texas, two states that have emerged as the latest hot spots of the U.S. coronavirus outbreak, both reported new single-day record increases in confirmed COVID-19 cases on Saturday - with nearly 20,000 additional infections combi...

Give Feedback