Air hostess serving food to a passenger in Air India flight. (Photo/ANI)
Air hostess serving food to a passenger in Air India flight. (Photo/ANI)

COVID-19: Number of air passengers increases after resumption of on-board meals

ANI | Updated: Sep 09, 2020 01:57 IST

New Delhi [India], September 9 (ANI): As the number of people travelling by air increases gradually after the government allowed the on-board meal, the crew members of Air India are adhering to Standard Operating Protocols (SOPs) and guidelines pertaining to the novel coronavirus.
Speaking to ANI, Ashmeet, an Air India hostess the crew members wear PPE kits and change gloves/masks after each service.
"The numbers of passengers have slightly increased after the government allowed onboard meals and they are 100 per cent safe. Middle seat passengers are given a gown and all are given face shields, gloves, masks and hand sanitiser. The crew wears PPE kits and changes gloves/masks after each service," Ashmeet told ANI.
"The flights are flying with almost full capacity. We are adhering to all guidelines. There are challenges, but we are ensuring the safety of passengers. We ensure that there remains adherence to guidelines. They need to show the Aarogya Setu App before boarding the plane. They need to undergo thermal scanning. Air India is ensuring the safety of its staff and passengers," she added.

Dinesh, Deputy Chief Aircraft Engineer, Air India Engineering Services Limited said that the airline is using a compound for disinfection and HEPA filters for ensuring the safety of passengers.

"We are using a compound called AMS 1452 for disinfection. We are also using High-Efficiency Particulate (HEPA) filters which can filter out even minute virus. Airflow is not in to and fro but up and down direction. The air in the aircraft is replenished every 3 minutes. There is no need to panic while air travelling. Everyone should fly in national career Air India. We are ensuring everyone's safety," he said.

Pre-Approved and exempted category passengers list is the latest addition which has been made by Air India to ease the journey of passengers.
"We have added pre-approved and exempted category passengers list to further ease the journey of passengers. Under this service, passengers need to undergo RT-PCR test 96 hours prior to boarding the flight and they submit their negative test results to Air India. Later we send the list of such passengers to the Delhi government which grants them exemption certificates," said Dr Kriti Seth, Medical Officer, Airport Health Organization.
"When those passengers come here they show exemption certificate and they do not need to be in line and officials put a stamp of home quarantine stamp on their hand. They undergo 14 days of home isolation after reaching their homes," she added.
After COVID-19 cases began to surge in the country and subsequent lockdown, all domestic and international flight operations were suspended in March. Domestic operations were resumed in a calibrated manner on May 25.
The Central government in its Unlock 4 guidelines extended the ban on international commercial passenger flights to and from India till September 30, barring exceptions mentioned by the government. (ANI)