Coronavirus Tips | for Passengers Traveling by Air - Aviation Professional

Coronavirus Tips | for Passengers Traveling by Air

Coronavirus Tips

The best tip to everyone who wants to make an impact on the coronavirus pandemic is staying home. By visiting with as few people as possible, you limit the chances the virus has to spread either from you or to you. You should avoid flying if you can right now as the virus continues to spread.

But if you see traveling is a must!!, this article may help you to know the whole facts regarding traveling by air during the coronavirus pandemic. You need to make a self-risk assessment to decide either to travel or not. I will note give you any advice!!, what I am going to give you only numbers of coronavirus (COVID-19) tips which help you taking action to prepare for and protect yourself during air travel. you may feel anxious about the outbreak, all of us feel the same.

How do respiratory illnesses spread in general?

If you’ve ever sneezed into your arm or steered clear of an office colleague with a hacking cough, you already know the basics of how respiratory illnesses spread.
When an infected person coughs or sneezes, they shed droplets of saliva, mucus, or other bodily fluids. If any of those droplets fall on you—or if you touch them and then, say, touch your face—you can become infected as well.

These droplets are not affected by air flowing through space, but instead, fall fairly close to where they originate. According to Emily Landon, medical director of antimicrobial stewardship and infection control at the University of Chicago Medicine, the hospital’s guidelines for influenza define exposure as being within six feet of an infected person for 10 minutes or longer.
Time and distance matters,” Landon says.

Respiratory illnesses can also be spread through the surfaces upon which the droplets land—like airplane seats and tray tables. How long those droplets last depends both on the droplet and the surface—mucus or saliva, porous or non-porous, for example. Viruses can vary dramatically in how long they last on surfaces, from hours to months.

There’s also evidence that respiratory viruses can be transmitted through the air in tiny, dry particles known as aerosols. But, according to Arnold Monto, professor of epidemiology and global public health at the University of Michigan, it’s not the major mechanism of transmission.

To be sustained, to allow true aerosols, the virus has to be able to survive in that environment for the amount of time it’s exposed to drying,” he says. Viruses would rather be moist, and many fade from being infectious if left dry for too long.

What are the Symptoms of the Coronavirus?

If you become infected with the coronavirus, you may develop the following symptoms 2-14 days after exposure:
1.       Runny nose
2.       Sore throat
3.       Cough
4.       Fever
5.       Difficulty breathing (in more severe cases)
The symptoms of the coronavirus are very similar to that of the seasonal flu, so just because you develop the aforementioned symptoms, it does not mean you necessarily have COVID-19. In severe cases, coronavirus patients may also develop pneumonia.

Is it Safe to Travel During the Coronavirus Outbreak?

Unfortunately, no one can tell you that traveling during the coronavirus outbreak is entirely risk-free, regardless of your age, health, or travel destination. While the COVID-19 fatality rate appears to be relatively low, and you may even return from your trip unscathed and in great health, there are some things you should consider before you travel:
1.       Your age. The elderly, especially those over the age of 80, are the ones most endangered for complications of the coronavirus disease, whereas ages 10 – 39 have shown relatively low fatality rates (approximately 0.2%). That does not mean that you have a lower chance of infection if you are younger, only that you have a lower chance of the disease becoming fatal. You can still become infected and spread the disease around.
2.       Your medical history. People with pre-existing conditions are also more susceptible to become seriously ill from the coronavirus than those who were previously healthy. If you suffer from any respiratory disease, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension, cancer, etc, you should reconsider traveling.
3.       The country you will visit.  The majority of the cases are in China, where the virus first originated, but there are other “hot zones” with thousands of reported cases as well – most prominent are US, Italy, Spain, Iran and Germany [April 03, 2020, 20:28 GMT]. So, as a precaution, States have warned against travel to these countries, unless it is essential. That is not to say that traveling to countries with a smaller number of reported cases is completely safe as well.

Moreover, chances are you will have to go into self-quarantine for two weeks after returning from a high-risk country, even if you are not infected.

What does that mean for airplanes?

The World Health Organization defines contact with an infected person as being seated within two rows of one another.

But people don’t just sit during flights, particularly ones lasting longer than a few hours. They visit the bathroom, stretch their legs, and grab items from the overhead bins. In fact, during the 2003 coronavirus outbreak of the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), a passenger aboard a flight from Hong Kong to Beijing infected people well outside the WHO’s two-row boundary. The New England Journal of Medicine noted that the WHO criteria “would have missed 45 percent of the patients with SARS.”

Coronavirus Tips for Passengers Traveling by plane

Inspired in part by that case, a team of public health researchers set out to study how random movements about the airplane cabin might change passengers’ probability of infection.

The “FlyHealthy Research Team” observed the behaviors of passengers and crew on 10 transcontinental U.S. flights of about three and a half to five hours. Led by Emory University's Vicki Stover Hertzberg and Howard Weiss, they not only looked at how people moved about the cabin but also at how that affected the number and duration of their contacts with others. The team wanted to estimate how many close encounters might allow for transmission during transcontinental flights.
Suppose you’re seated in an aisle seat or a middle seat and I walk by to go to the lavatory,” says Weiss, professor of biology and mathematics at Penn State University. “We’re going to be in close contact, meaning we’ll be within a meter. So if I’m infected, I could transmit to you...Ours was the first study to quantify this.”

As the study revealed in 2018, most passengers left their seats at some point—generally to use the restroom or check the overhead bins—during these medium-haul flights. Overall, 38 percent of passengers left their seats once and 24 percent more than once. Another 38 percent of people stayed in their seats throughout the entire flight.

This activity helps to pinpoint the safest places to sit. The passengers who were least likely to get up were in window seats: only 43 percent moved around as opposed to 80 percent of people seated on the aisle.
Accordingly, window seat passengers had far fewer close encounters than people in other seats, averaging 12 contacts compared to the 58 and 64 respective contacts for passengers in middle and aisle seats.

Choosing a window seat and staying put lowers your likelihood of coming into contact with an infectious disease. But, as you can see in the accompanying graphic, the team’s model shows that passengers in middle and aisle seats—even those that are within the WHO’s two-seat range—have a fairly low probability of getting infected.

Weiss says that’s because most contact people have on airplanes is relatively short.
If you’re seated in an aisle seat, certainly there will be quite a few people moving past you, but they’ll be moving quickly,” Weiss says. “In aggregate, what we show is there’s quite a low probability of transmission to any particular passenger.”

The story changes if the ill person is a crew member. Because flight attendants spend much more time walking down the aisle and interacting with passengers, they are more likely to have additional—and longer—close encounters. As the study stated, a sick crew member has a probability of infecting 4.6 passengers, “thus, it is imperative that flight attendants not fly when they are ill.”

What does it mean for the new coronavirus?

As Weiss points out, we don’t know yet the preferred way that the new coronavirus transmits. It could be primarily through respiratory droplets, physical contact with saliva or diarrhea followed by oral consumption of viral material, or perhaps even aerosols.

He notes that this model doesn’t include the transmission of aerosols, though the FlyHealthy team hopes to research this topic in the future. In the study, the researchers also warn that this model cannot be directly extrapolated for long-haul flights or airplanes with more than one aisle.

What Can I Do to Keep Myself Safe From Coronavirus During my Travels?
According to the WHO (World Health Organization), to keep yourself safe if you travel during the COVID-19 outbreak, you have to:
1.      Wash your hands frequently.
This is without a doubt the most crucial thing you can do to minimize your risk of contracting the coronavirus disease. And not just a quick rinse – wash your hands with soap for at least 20 to 30 seconds any chance you get – especially after being in public or traveling via public transport. If you are traveling by plane, wash your hands after leaving the airport. If you don’t have access to soap and water, then rub a hand sanitizer gel with at least 60% alcohol content on your hands and wrists. But remember that hand sanitizer is not as effective as a thorough wash with soap.
2.      Do not touch your face with unwashed hands.
If you have been in a public place, don’t touch your face unless you have thoroughly cleaned your hands. The novel coronavirus can live on surfaces for hours after it has been touched by an infected person, and can infect you if you touch your mouth, nose, and eyes.
3.      Keep your distance.
If you notice someone is coughing, sneezing, or showing symptoms similar to that of the flu or a cold, make sure to stay at least 1 meter (3 feet) away from them. You can become infected by their airborne respiratory (cough or sneeze) droplets.
4.      Clean frequently-touched objects with a cleaning spray or wipe.
If you will stay in a hotel or hostel while you are abroad, make sure you book somewhere where you know it will be clean. Even so, it doesn’t hurt to check-in with the staff and management to see whether they have cleaned your room thoroughly – or maybe even giving frequently-touched objects a sweep with a disinfectant yourself.
5.      Avoid crowds – especially in closed spaces.
If you are traveling to a country with a high number of coronavirus cases, it is best if you stay away from any place where there is a large number of people.
6.      Do your research regarding the spread of the coronavirus outbreak in the country you are visiting.
See what the health and government officials are advising in that country and follow the same rules. If they advise staying away from crowds or a certain region, then you should do the same.
7.      Wear a mask and seek medical help if you develop symptoms.
If you develop COVID-19 symptoms, such as fever, coughing, or difficulty breathing, wear a mask so that you don’t risk infecting other people and seek medical help immediately.

Many airlines have even added to their already extensive Handling of In-flight Medical procedures in light of COVID-19( by IATA). But I am sure as an aviation professional that air passengers will become and a main safety team player in the future.
The risk of catching an infection on an aircraft is typically lower than in a shopping center or an office environment, apply above simple measures to further reduce the risk of illness if you are traveling.

If you don't wish to travel during an outbreak. Stay at home till the end, fantastic tips and suggestions of things you can be doing with your newfound time at home during the coronavirus you can take time to read some novels, learn to play music, help your wife, play with your kids or simply call and talk to the ones you love. The most thing I advise you to do is coming back to my blog – smile it's a joke but.

I will be happy to see you again and read your comments below. Maged

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