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COVID-19 health checklist for airlines

Airlines around the world are grappling with the impact of COVID-19 on their business. Paramount to their survival is being able to implement new protocols and quickly increase hygiene measures to protect their customers and staff.

To provide guidance for air travel during the pandemic, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) has released an airline self-assessment health checklist. The checklist is aimed to support the International Civil Aviation Organisation’s (ICAO) Take-off: Guidance for Air Travel through the COVID-19 Public Health Crisis.

“Safety is always the number one priority for air transport. And the challenges of COVID-19 have added a new dimension to our efforts. Developed with input from industry, public health authorities and governments, ICAO’s Take-off guidance is the global standard for safe operations. IATA’s self-assessment checklist is a practical implementation guide to help airlines comply,” said IATA’s Director General and CEO, Alexandre de Juniac.

The IATA Health Safety Checklist for Airline Operators provides the standards and recommended practices (IHSARPs), associated guidance material and other supporting information necessary for an operator to self-assess.

Sections cover:

  • Pre-arrival notification;
  • Check in;
  • Embarkation and Disembarkation;
  • Aircraft Cleaning;
  • Onboard Air Quality;
  • In-flight Operations;
  • Flight and Cabin Crew – General;
  • Crew Layover;
  • Airport Facilities.

IATA represents around 290 airlines in world, which account for over 80% of global air traffic. Majority of airlines have adopted most, if not all, of these recommendations.

It’s now commonplace to receive notification prior to departure of check-in procedures and what to expect on board. Plus many airlines are providing travellers with face masks and personal hygiene kits. Aircraft deep cleaning has increased and social distancing measures are in place for boarding and disembarkation.

“A harmonised approach to health is key, not only to the recovery of civil aviation but also to ‘building back better,’ which is crucially important to ensuring the future resilience of the aviation network,” said ICAO’s Council President, Salvatore Sciacchitano.

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