Man found living in Chicago airport for three months ‘due to fear of Covid’

a view of O’Hare International Airport
A California man was arrested after living in a secure part of O’Hare international airport in Chicago for three months because he was scared of coronavirus. Photograph: Kamil Krzaczyński/Reuters

Aditya Singh allegedly stayed in secure area of O’Hare international airport after becoming too afraid to return home to California
A California man was arrested after living in a secure part of O’Hare international airport in Chicago for three months because he was scared of coronavirus.
A man has been living in a secure section of Chicago’s international airport for three months, apparently telling police he was too afraid of coronavirus to return home to Los Angeles, according to multiple reports.
The 36-year-old man, Californian Aditya Singh, was arrested this weekend and charged with criminal trespass to a restricted area of an airport, a felony, and theft, a misdemeanour, the Chicago Tribune reported.
Prosecutors said on Sunday that, according to police, the man arrived on a flight from Los Angeles to O’Hare international airport on 19 October. Nearly three months later, on Saturday afternoon, Singh was approached by two United Airlines employees who asked to see identification. Singh allegedly showed them an airport ID badge that had been reported missing by its owner, an airport operations manager, on 26 October.
Assistant state attorney Kathleen Hagerty told Cook County judge Susana Ortiz that other passengers had been giving food to Singh, who does not have a criminal background. Hagerty said Singh had found the badge in the airport and was “scared to go home due to Covid”.
Ortiz reportedly told the court: “You’re telling me that an unauthorised, non-employee individual was allegedly living within a secure part of the O’Hare airport terminal from 10 October, 2020, to 16 January, 2021, and was not detected? I want to understand you correctly.”
After finding Singh, the United Airlines employees called 911. Police took him into custody on Saturday morning.
Singh has a master’s degree in hospitality, is unemployed and lives with roommates in Orange, Los Angeles, according to assistant public defender Courtney Smallwood.

“The court finds these facts and circumstances quite shocking for the alleged period of time that this occurred,” said Ortiz. “Being in a secured part of the airport under a fake ID badge allegedly, based upon the need for airports to be absolutely secure so that people feel safe to travel, I do find those alleged actions do make him a danger to the community.”
Singh’s bail was set at $1,000. Should he be able to post bail, he is barred from entering the airport.
The Chicago Department of Aviation (CDA) said in a statement: “CDA has no higher priority than the safety and security of our airports, which is maintained by a coordinated and multilayered law enforcement network.
“While this incident remains under investigation, we have been able to determine that this gentleman did not pose a security risk to the airport or to the traveling public. We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners on a thorough investigation of this matter.”


Singapore urges national airline to be first to vaccinate all staff

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Singapore on Monday urged workers at its national airline to help make it the world’s first carrier with all staff vaccinated against COVID-19, with Singapore Airlines CEO Goh Phong Choon also encouraging employees to receive shots.
Vaccinating Singapore’s 37,000 frontline aviation and maritime staff is seen as key to reopening borders of the island-state, which is preparing to host events such as the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting and the Shangri-La Dialogue Asian security summit in a few months’ time.
Singapore Airlines (SIA), in which state investor Temasek is the biggest shareholder, lacks a domestic market to cushion it against the coronavirus border closures which have shattered the aviation industry globally. It said last year it had cut 4,300 jobs, or around 20% of its staff.
“SIA (Singapore Airlines) can be the first vaccinated international airline of the world. Try to get that done,” Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung told aviation workers at a vaccination drive at the airport on Monday.
More than 5,200 SIA employees have signed up to be vaccinated since staff started being inoculated last week, according to a memo sent to staff by CEO Goh on Monday.
An SIA spokesman said that represented about 50% of those eligible for the vaccine, which is being offered for free to residents by the government on a voluntary basis.
“Vaccinations are widely expected to be the game-changer in facilitating the opening of borders once again,” Goh said.
“This will also be an important differentiator in the airline industry…I strongly urge everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated as soon as possible.”
Unlike other mass vaccination programmes in the United States and Britain, Singapore is administering the jabs having largely contained the disease locally.
The plans have stirred rare hesitancy among some due to the low risk of infection and concern about any possible side effects from rapidly developed vaccines.


For Airlines, Dry Ice in Vaccine Transport Demands Special Attention

A worker with dry ice at a Pfizer plant in Puurs, Belgium. The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine must be stored at minus-70 degrees Celsius.

The refrigerant needed to maintain some doses during distribution is regulated as a dangerous good for aviation transport
The large amounts of dry ice needed to speed Covid-19 vaccine candidates to pandemic-weary populations will call for special attention from airlines and safety regulators.
Dry ice, the solid form of carbon dioxide, is a critical part of plans to transport the vaccine developed by Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE, which must be kept at ultracold temperatures. Pfizer expects to ship 50 million doses world-wide by the end of the year. The vaccine was the first to be authorized in the West, receiving clearance for emergency use in the U.K. last week. It is under review by the Food and Drug Administration in the U.S.
Widely used as a refrigerant, dry ice is classified as a dangerous good by the International Civil Aviation Organization and the U.S. Department of Transportation because it changes to gas form as it breaks down, a process called sublimation. Shippers must use ventilated containers that allow the gas to release, to prevent pressure from building up and rupturing the packaging.
The gas can also displace oxygen in confined spaces with poor ventilation, creating a suffocation hazard, though the risk is minimal under normal cabin ventilation, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.
“If oxygen levels get down below 19%, that could cause a hazard to people and animals,” said Delmer Billings, technical director for the Dangerous Goods Advisory Council, a nonprofit trade group that promotes safe transportation of hazardous materials. “If you deplete oxygen sufficiently, it could cause unconsciousness, even death,” he added.
Air carriers involved in vaccine transport efforts are asking aviation regulators to increase the amount of dry ice they are allowed to carry on flights hauling vaccines as they work with drugmakers and governments to set up distribution channels. Restrictions on the amount of the material on planes are typically based on aircraft ventilation rates and factors such as the size of the plane and whether it is used for passenger or cargo flights, said Robert Coyle, senior vice president of pharma and healthcare strategy at freight forwarder Kuehne + Nagel International AG.
On Thursday, Delta Air Lines Inc. said it had received FAA approval to double the allowed load of dry ice on its Airbus A330 and A350 wide-body jets, and six times the prior allowed load for shipments using a special suitcase-sized storage container that Pfizer designed.
Delta has done trial runs with vaccine cargoes from Europe and to Latin America, and within the U.S., all on cargo-only flights.
United Airlines Holdings Inc. secured FAA approval last month to boost its dry-ice allowance to 15,000 pounds from 3,000 pounds, for chartered cargo flights between Brussels International Airport and Chicago O’Hare International Airport to support distribution of the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine. A United spokeswoman said the airline “has effective procedures in place to ensure we safely handle all the hazardous materials we are permitted to carry on board our aircraft.”
Extremely cold with a surface temperature of about minus-78 degrees Celsius, dry ice has long been used to ship medicine, pharmaceutical products and perishable food such as meat or ice cream.
“When packaged and stored properly, it poses no risk,” said Rafael Teixeira, president of World Courier and ICS, a specialty logistics provider owned by drug distributor AmerisourceBergen Corp.
The scale of the Covid-19 vaccine distribution effort is unprecedented, involving billions of doses with strict temperature-control requirements that are expected to strain cold-chain shipping networks.
The Pfizer and BioNTech shots must be kept at minus-70 degrees Celsius—colder than the average annual temperature at the South Pole and lower than some other vaccine candidates require. Moderna Inc.’s shot, the other leading front-runner, must be shipped and stored at a below-freezing temperature that most home or medical freezers can accommodate.
Makers of dry ice are bracing for an expected demand surge. Logistics providers have been building “freezer farms” with hundreds of portable units that store pharmaceuticals at ultralow temperatures.
Plymouth, Minn.-based Pelican BioThermal LLC, which makes packaging that typically uses engineered materials to maintain temperatures, has tested and approved the use of dry ice in its systems to provide the sub-frozen temperatures needed to maintain the efficacy of Covid-19 vaccines. The company is also ramping up global production of its large shipping containers that can hold full pallets of goods on rising demand from pharmaceutical companies looking to ship vaccines.
“There are a lot of investments b made right now to get this done,” said Ira Smith, director of Pelican’s rental program in the Americas.


Berlaku Besok, Pemerintah Hapus Airport Tax di 13 Bandara

Calon penumpang di bandara berjalan menuju pesawat terbang komersil. (Foto ilustrasi)
Calon penumpang di bandara berjalan menuju pesawat terbang komersil. (Foto ilustrasi)

VIVA – Pemerintah menghapus biaya Pelayanan Jasa Penumpang Pesawat Udara (PJP2U) atau seringkali dikenal sebagai Passenger Service Charge (PSC) di 13 bandara yang ditentukan. Pembebasan Airport Tax itu diberikan kepada para penumpang yang berangkat dalam upaya mendorong kebangkitan industri penerbangan dan pariwisata.

“Setiap penumpang tidak dibebani biaya PSC, karena akan dikeluarkan dari komponen biaya tiket, dan biaya PSC-nya akan ditagihkan oleh operator bandara kepada Pemerintah,” kata Direktur Jenderal Perhubungan Udara Kementerian Perhubungan Novie Riyanto dalam jumpa pers virtual di Jakarta, Kamis.

Stimulus PJP2U ini akan diberlakukan bagi calon penumpang yang membeli tiket mulai dari tanggal 23 Oktober 2020 jam 00.01 WIB hingga 31 Desember 2020 jam 23.59 WIB. “Dan tiket yang dibeli untuk penerbangan sebelum jam 00.01 tanggal 1 Januari 2021,” katanya.

Hal tersebut disampaikan usai Penandatanganan Kesepakatan Bersama Pemberian Stimulus Penerbangan Tarif Pelayanan Jasa Penumpang Pesawat Udara dan Pemberian Stimulus Pelayanan Jasa Kalibrasi Fasilitas Penerbangan, yang antara lain dihadiri oleh Dirut PT Angkasa Pura I (Persero) Faik Fahmi, Dirut PT Angkasda Pura II (Persero) Muhammad Awaluddin, serta Ketua Umum Asosiasi Perusahaan Penerbangan Nasional Indonesia (INACA) Denon Prawiraatmadja.

Dikatakan Novie, pandemi COVID-19 menjadi mimpi buruk bagi industri penerbangan yang berdampak pada anjloknya arus penumpang dari dan ke berbagai daerah, sehingga pemerintah melalui Kementerian Perhubungan perlu memberikan insentif atau stimulus penerbangan.

Harapan dari stimulus Tarif PJP2U ini, katanya, akan memberikan keringanan bagi para penumpang untuk bepergian menggunakan jasa transportasi udara yang akhirnya akan membangkitkan pertumbuhan industri lainnya seperti pariwisata dan UMKM.

Stimulus berupa penyediaan biaya kalibrasi fasilitas navigasi penerbangan dan alat bantu pendaratan pesawat yang menjadi kewajiban operator bandara baik Angkasa Pura I, Angkasa Pura II, Bandara Hang Nadim Batam dan Bandara Komodo-Labuan Bajo ditanggung oleh Pemerintah. Sehingga, dapat meringankan beban biaya operasional operator bandara akibat pandemi COVID-19.

Dikatakan, stimulus tarif PJP2U atau PSC akan berlaku di 13 bandara udara yaitu Bandar Udara Internasional Soekarno-Hatta, Tangerang (CGK), Hang Nadim, Batam (BTH), Kuala Namu, Deliserdang (KNO), I Gusti Ngurah Rai, Denpasar (DPS), Yogyakarta Internasional, Kulon Progo (YIA), Halim Perdanakusuma, Jakarta (HLP), Internasional Lombok, Praya (LOP), Jenderal Ahmad Yani, Semarang (SRG), Sam Ratulangi, Manado (MDC), Komodo, Labuan Bajo (LBJ), Silangit (DTB), Blimbingsari, Banyuwangi (BWX), Adi Sucipto, Yogjakarta (JOG).

Stimulus PJP2U ini tentunya adalah berita baik bagi masyarakat dan industri penerbangan, diharapkan dengan stimulus ini masyarakat akan mendapatkan keringan biaya perjalanan menggunakan maskapai dengan berbagai tujuan, yang akhirnya akan memberikan dampak yang signifikan terhadap pertumbuhan ekonomi di daerah, seperti industri pariwisata, sektor UMKM dan juga industri lainnya.

Tentu saja di tengah pandemi ini diharapkan masyarakat pengguna jasa transportasi udara tetap mengutamakan protocol Kesehatan dengan tetap menerapkan 3 M yaitu menggunakan masker, mencuci tangan dan juga menjaga jarak.

Kemenhub berharap bagi operator penerbangan maupun operator bandar udara dengan adanya stimulus PJP2U menjadi berita baik, dengan harapan peningkatan pengguna jasa transportasi udara, namun di sisi lain para pemangku kepentingan penerbangan tetap diwajibkan menaati SE Dirjen Nomor 13 Tahun 2020. (Ant)


AirAsia X Berhenti Beroperasi di Indonesia, Ada Apa?

Foto Pesawat Airbus A330-900 yang dipesan AirAsia X(dok AirAsia X, Airbus)

JAKARTA, – Maskapai AirAsia X berencana menutup operasionalnya di Indonesia. Langkah tersebut dilakukan agar dapat bertahan di tengah pandemi Covid-19. Sebagaimana diketahui, maskapai yang merupakan bagian dari AirAsia Group itu belum dapat beroperasi sejak Maret lalu. Deputy Chairman Air Asia X Lim Kian Onn mengatakan, penutupan operasional juga merupakan bagian dari restrukturisasi yang tengah dilakukan maskapai guna menghapus utang sebesar 63,5 miliar ringgit atau setara Rp 222 triliun (asumsi kurs Rp 3.500 per ringgit).

Lim mengaku kesulitan untuk mendapatkan persetujuan dari para investor dan kreditur. Pasalnya, mereka merasa kecewa dan meminta meminta persyaratan yang lebih baik, termasuk ekuitas gratis untuk utang yang dihapuskan. Namun, Lim menambahkan, hal itu tidak mungkin dipenuhi oleh maskapai penerbangan.  Meskipun begitu, Lim memastikan bahwa pihaknya akan menemukan jalan tengah guna memajukan bisnis maskapai.

“Tidak ada yang bisa mendapatkan keuntungan dari ditutupnya usaha kami,” ujarnya dikutip dari The New Straits Times, Senin (19/10/2020). Sebagai informasi, AirAsia X merupakan maskapai yang difokuskan untuk melayani penerbangan jarak jauh, dengan waktu terbang lebih dari 4 jam. CEO AirAsia Group Tony Fernandes pun mengakui, penerbangan jarak jauh akan memakan waktu pulih lebih lama ketimbang jarak dekat. “Business travel, penerbangan antarbenua, first class travel, akan membutuhkan waktu lama untuk bangkit,” ucap Fernandes.

Artikel ini telah tayang di dengan judul “AirAsia X Berhenti Beroperasi di Indonesia, Ada Apa? “, Klik untuk baca:
Penulis : Rully R. Ramli
Editor : Sakina Rakhma Diah Setiawan

Kiat Maskapai Bertahan Saat Pandemi: Thai Airways Jualan Gorengan, AirAsia Bisnis Akikah

Gerai penjualan patong-go di gedung THAI Catering, Bangkok.
Gerai penjualan patong-go di gedung THAI Catering, Bangkok.(FACEBOOK THAI CATERING)

JAKARTA, – Penyebaran pandemi virus corona ( Covid-19) membuat performa industri maskapai babak belur. Jumlah penumpang anjlok seiiring dengan pembatasan aktivitas di berbagai negara. Tak mau tinggal diam menanti ancaman kebangkrutan, perusahaan maskapai penerbangan terpaksa merambah bisnis lain agar bisa tetap bertahan. Salah satu kiatnya yakni memanfaatkan anak usaha atau divisi bisnis katering untuk meraup pendapatan tambahan. Sebagaimana diketahui, industri kuliner memang relatif kebal terhadap pandemi Covid-19. Belanja masyarakat yang masih tinggi terhadap konsumsi makanan jadi tolok ukurnya. Berikut contoh dua maskapai penerbangan yang terjun ke bisnis kuliner.

1. AirAsia buka bisnis daging akikah

Maskapai penerbangan swasta terbesar Malaysia ini baru saja mengumumkan langkah bisnis dengan terjun ke perdagangan daging akikah. Populasi muslim di Negeri Jiran yang besar, membuat prospek bisnis daging kambing untuk aqiqah sangat potensial. Selain itu, AirAsia juga fokus menggarap pasar umat muslim di luar negeri yang jadi wilayah operasional armada pesawat AirAsia seperti Timur Tengah, Bangladesh, Thailand, dan India. Permintaan daging akikah selalu tinggi dan tak mengenal musim. Air Asia sendiri meluncurkan platform penjualan online bernama Ikhlas yang bisa diakses di laman Bisnis daging akikah ini dijalankan anak perusahaannya, Ikhlas Com Travel Sdn Bhd yang berkantor pusat di Kuala Lumpur Sentral, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Harga kambing yang ditawarkan bervariasi yakni antara RM 499 atau sekitar Rp 1,77 juta (kurs Rp 3.500) dan paling mahal sebesar RM 799 atau sekitar Rp 2,83 juta. “Sebagai bagian dari ekspansi bisnis digital grup AirAsia, Ikhlas, lini bisnis yang melayani platform gaya hidup Muslim hari ini meluncurkan layanan terbarunya, aqiqah,” tulis Air Asia di laman resminya seperti dikutip pada Senin (12/10/2020).

2. Thai Airways jual gorengan

Thai Airways adalah satu contoh maskapai yang terbilang sukses menggeluti bisnis kuliner di luar katering penerbangan di saat pandemi Covid-19. Tak tanggung-tanggung, maskapai flag carrier ini bahkan mengandalkan jualan gorengan.

Gorengan yang dijual Thai Airways cukup populer bagi masyarakat Thailand, khususnya di Bangkok. Perusahaan ini memanfaatkan aset kateringnya untuk memproduksi gorengan yang diberi nama Patong-go tersebut.

Untuk penjualannya, selain menyewa tempat di berbagai lokasi strategis, Thai Airways juga memanfaatkan aset-aset propertinya seperti kantor di berbagai sudut kota untuk lokasi berjualan. Setiap orang, orang-orang rela mengantre untuk membeli Patong-go sejak dibuka mulai pagi hari. Dikutip dari Bangkok Post, setiap kotak dijual seharga 50 baht (Rp 23.600) yang berisi tiga gorengan dan sebungkus saus celup yang terbuat dari ubi ungu dan telur custard. Beberapa lokasi penjualannya antara lain toko roti Puff & Pie di pasar Or Tor Kor, di kantor pusatnya di distrik Chatuchak, gedung Rak Khun Tao Fa, gedung Thai Catering di distrik Don Muang, serta kantor cabang Thai Airways di Silom. Thai Airways tak hanya menjual gorengan, lini bisnis kateringnya juga dimanfaatkan untuk menjual roti. Perusahaan juga menyulap restoran menjadi kabin pesawat kelas satu. Untuk membangun suasana, restoran itu dilengkapi dengan kursi yang nyaman dan awak kabin yang perhatian.

Thai Airways restoran pop up di Bangkok, Thailand.
Thai Airways restoran pop up di Bangkok, Thailand. (Dok. AFP)

Artikel ini telah tayang di dengan judul “Kiat Maskapai Bertahan Saat Pandemi: Thai Airways Jualan Gorengan, AirAsia Bisnis Akikah”, Klik untuk baca:
Penulis : Muhammad Idris
Editor : Muhammad Idris

Covid-19 Vaccine Delivery Will Present Tough Challenge to Cargo Airlines

Covid-19 Vaccine Delivery Will Present Tough Challenge to Cargo Airlines

  • Inoculations for the new coronavirus will require thousands of extra flights, taxing stretched airlines
  • UPS is combining multiple refrigerators at its airport hubs to store vaccines in transit.

The pandemic has revealed shortcomings in global supply chains and forced business to make logistics a bigger strategic priority. Successfully delivering Covid-19 vaccines will test manufacturers and shippers on what lessons have been learned.
“If 50 million doses were available today, could we distribute them?” asked Glyn Hughes, head of cargo at the International Air Transport Association, a trade group. “The answer is almost certainly ‘No’, for every jurisdiction.”
The air-cargo industry is making plans for delivering as many as 20 billion Covid-19 vaccination doses, even before regulators have approved any of the multiple treatments under development. Shippers say they are having to plan without knowing exactly how many vaccine doses they’ll have to ship, where they will be manufactured and how cold they have to be kept.
Pharmaceutical companies and shippers say they expect the bulk of vaccine supplies to be transported by air. Cargo-airline executives are working on a delivery schedule that assumes initial batches become available during the traditional peak season for shipping that runs from fall through early February.
Carriers such as FedEx Corp. FDX 0.44% and the DHL arm of Deutsche Post AG DPSGY 0.22% have started preparations such as introducing new temperature-monitoring systems to track future vaccine shipments. United Parcel Service Inc. UPS -0.41% and Deutsche Lufthansa AG are building “freezer farms” combining multiple refrigerators at their airport hubs to store vaccines in transit.
Yet cargo flights are fast filling up through February with bookings for consumer electronics, apparel and industrial parts through the holiday season and new year, said airline executives. This year’s peak season is expected to include a lift from the delayed iPhone 5G from Apple Inc. and Sony Corp.’s PlayStation 5.
“We’re planning for the mother of all peaks,” said Don Colleran, president of FedEx’s express division, on an investor call last month.
Airlines said they would make room for essential supplies such as vaccines, just as they have for personal protective equipment throughout the pandemic.
Most of the potential vaccines have to be kept at a low constant temperature throughout the journey to prevent spoiling, according to cargo experts. These fall into two temperature ranges—around freezing and about minus 70 degrees Celsius—with very different transport and storage requirements.
Pharma executives said spoilage rates for other vaccines during transport range from 5% to as much as 20% because of poor temperature control.
“This is going to be one of the biggest challenges for the transportation industry,” Michael Steen, chief operating officer at Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings Inc., said in an interview. Atlas is one of the largest cargo airlines, flying freight on behalf of customers including Inc. and DHL.
Cargo executives said they expect it will take two years for a vaccine to reach all of the world’s population, with particular challenges in some emerging markets where infrastructure is limited.
The air-cargo industry isn’t starting from scratch. Pharma products have been one of the fastest-growing and most profitable cargo types over the past decade. Shippers have developed increasingly sophisticated supply chains for vaccines in recent years, especially for the flu. Gene therapies, another booming area, already require transport and storage at very low temperatures.
Planning flu-season vaccine deliveries typically starts months ahead and includes analyzing which routes and airports carry the highest risk for delays and spoilage, said Larry St. Onge, president of DHL’s life sciences and health care unit.
DHL is applying that analysis to potential Covid-19 vaccines, which will have more-urgent delivery needs and far larger volume.
IATA estimates transporting a single dose to the global population would require the equivalent of 8,000 fully-laden Boeing Co. 747 flights, based on dimensions for vials and packaging provided by pharma companies. A recent study by DHL and McKinsey & Co. pegged demand at 15,000 flights, while including syringes and protective equipment for medical staff would increase the cargo-space requirement.
Pharma shipments already account for around 1.9% of global air-cargo volume, said IATA, and adding Covid-19 vaccines could double that share. Not every freighter jet is able to handle very cold cargo because of regulatory restrictions on how much dry ice they can transport to cool them, said executives.
Air-cargo capacity is already tight, with flights flying fuller than before the pandemic started. International air-cargo capacity was down 32% in August from a year earlier while demand was only 14% lower.
The pandemic-driven travel downturn has removed from service hundreds of passenger jets and the belly space that once carried cargo. More freighters are joining the fleet, with Atlas returning stored 747s from the desert and passenger airlines converting around 100 planes to carry freight in their cabins.
Covid-19 vaccine makers such as Pfizer Inc. have already begun manufacturing doses to be ready for shipment should regulators authorize their use. However, the uncertainty over approval timing and shipping requirements has meant they have stopped short of booking space on cargo flights, said airline executives.
The U.S. government last month outlined its initial plans for distributing vaccines domestically under its Operation Warp Speed program run by the Department of Health and Human Services and the Pentagon, as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
McKesson Corp. , one of the world’s largest drug wholesalers, has been contracted by CDC to ship some vaccine types in the U.S. It hasn’t detailed how they would be transported, and air-cargo executives said they haven’t signed any Covid-19 vaccine-related deals yet. McKesson declined to comment.
President Trump said during the opening presidential debate last week that the military would support distribution of the vaccine. The Pentagon said it doesn’t expect to have to use military transport aircraft, except to very remote areas. “Our best military assessment is that there is sufficient U.S. commercial-transportation capacity to fully support vaccine distribution,” said a spokesman.

Virgin Atlantic to Test Cabin Crew and Pilots for COVID-19 at Least Once a Month

Photo Credit: Virgin Atlantic

Beleaguered airline Virgin Atlantic is to test all of its cabin crew and pilots for COVID-19 at least once a month as part of measures to “instil confidence” in the safety of air travel. The airline, which is majority-owned by Sir Richard Branson, however, warned the move would do little to increase ticket sales without a system to replace draconian quarantine rules with mass COVID-19 passenger testing.

Pilots and cabin crew have been taking part in a trial of rapid pre-flight COVID-19 testing since September 30 on flights to Hong Kong and Shanghai. Both of these destinations require crew to present a negative COVID-19 test certificate before being allowed entry.

The plan is now to extend rapid testing to other destinations that require negative tests for crew members, as well as those where such requirements don’t currently exist. In effect, it would mean that all crew would be tested for COVID-19 at least once per month.

Testing would be mandatory for certain destinations.
The move follows a similar initiative developed by shareholder Delta Air Lines. The Atlanta-based airline has now tested every member of staff for the novel Coronavirus and plans to roll-out mass rapid testing in the near future.
Results from the mass-testing program, Delta claims, shows that cabin crew are less likely to succumb to COVID-19 than the general public. The airline put that down to safety measures like mandatory mask-wearing rules and enhanced aircraft cleaning.

Last week, Air Canada also announced plans to roll-out mass rapid COVID-19 testing for staff members on a voluntary basis. The airline is using the Abbott rapid ID NOW testing system that can produce results in as little as 15-minutes.
On Monday, the South African government had to clarify rules for flight crew entering the government after Emirates apparently cancelled some services over confusion with new COVID-19 travel restrictions. While passengers must present a negative test certificate dated within 72-hours of travel, this will no longer be a requirement for cabin crew.
They won’t, however, now be allowed to leave their hotel rooms as part of preventative measures.


Pesawat Garuda Pakai Masker, Dukung Kampanye Pemerintah

Garuda Indonesia meluncurkan pesawat dengan corak visual bermasker pada bagian depan pesawat Airbus A330-900 Neo.
Garuda Indonesia meluncurkan pesawat dengan corak visual bermasker pada bagian depan pesawat Airbus A330-900 Neo.(Dok. Garuda Indonesia).

Jakarta, CNN Indonesia — 

PT Garuda Indonesia (Persero) Tbk meluncurkan livery atau corak khusus yang menampilkan visual masker pada bagian depan pesawat Airbus A330-900 Neo.

Direktur Utama Garuda Indonesia Irfan Setiaputra mengatakan peluncuran livery masker pesawat ini merupakan bentuk dukungan terhadap program edukasi pemerintah melalui kampanye ‘Ayo Pakai Masker’.

“Kebanggaan tersendiri bagi kami menjadi maskapai penerbangan nasional pertama di Indonesia yang menampilkan livery khusus pesawat dengan masker. Hal ini juga sejalan dengan komitmen dalam mengedepankan aspek keselamatan dan kenyamanan penumpang di masa adaptasi kebiasaan baru,” ujar Irfan melalui keterangan resminya, Kamis (1/10).

Irfan memaparkan total pesawat yang akan menggunakan livery bermasker sebanyak 5 armada. Lima pesawat ini akan melayani rute penerbangan domestik maupun rute penerbangan internasional, termasuk destinasi penerbangan Singapura dan Jepang.

Lebih lanjut, dalam rangka mengoptimalkan kampanye penggunaan masker tersebut, Garuda Indonesia akan menyelenggarakan kompetisi desain livery masker pesawat bertajuk ‘Fly Your Design Through The Sky’ yang sepanjang Oktober 2020.

Sementara itu, Ketua Komite Penanganan covid-19 dan Pemulihan Ekonomi Nasional (KPCPEN) Erick Thohir mengungkapkan apresiasi terhadap inisiatif tersebut.

Irfan memaparkan total pesawat yang akan menggunakan livery bermasker sebanyak 5 armada. Lima pesawat ini akan melayani rute penerbangan domestik maupun rute penerbangan internasional, termasuk destinasi penerbangan Singapura dan Jepang.

Lebih lanjut, dalam rangka mengoptimalkan kampanye penggunaan masker tersebut, Garuda Indonesia akan menyelenggarakan kompetisi desain livery masker pesawat bertajuk ‘Fly Your Design Through The Sky’ yang sepanjang Oktober 2020.

Sementara itu, Ketua Komite Penanganan covid-19 dan Pemulihan Ekonomi Nasional (KPCPEN) Erick Thohir mengungkapkan apresiasi terhadap inisiatif tersebut.


Saat Lima Pesawat Garuda “Pakai” Masker…

Livery “Ayo Pakai Masker” pesawat Garuda Indonesia A330-900 neo PK-GHG di Hangar 2 GMF AeroAsia.
Livery “Ayo Pakai Masker” pesawat Garuda Indonesia A330-900 neo PK-GHG di Hangar 2 GMF AeroAsia.(Twitter Garuda Indonesia)

JAKARTA, – Banyak cara yang bisa dilakukan untuk mendukung program edukasi pemerintah melalui gerakan “Ayo Pakai Masker”. Garuda Indonesia misalnya, menampilkan visual masker pada bagian hidung pesawat jenis Airbus A330-900 Neo. Foto pesawat Garuda Indonesia “pakai” masker itu diunggah akun Twitter resmi maskapai BUMN tersebut @IndonesiaGaruda, Kamis (1/10/2020). Sontak saja foto itu dibanjiri pujian para netizen. “Keren!!!,” tulis akun @bimaevans.

Direktur Utama Garuda Indonesia Irfan Setiaputra mengatakan, Garuda Indonesia terus mendukung berbagai upaya yang dilaksanakan pemerintah dalam mencegah penyebaran Covid-19. “Menjadi kebanggaan tersendiri bagi kami menjadi maskapai penerbangan nasional pertama di Indonesia yang menampilkan livery khusus pesawat dengan masker,” ujar Irfan dalam keterangan yang diterima, Senin.

Irfan menambahkan, pihaknya menyadari bahwa upaya pencegahan penyebaran pandemi Covid-19 tentunya memerlukan dukungan penuh dan peran aktif berbagai pihak. “Kiranya dengan dengan upaya yang kami lakukan tersebut dapat turut meningkatkan kesadaran masyarakat akan penerapan protokol kesehatan dalam kehidupan sehari-hari, khususnya melalui penggunaan masker,” kata Irfan.

Irfan menjelaskan, ada lima pesawat milik Garuda Indonesia yang bagian depannya menampilkan visual masker. Nanntinya, pesawat-pesawat tersebut akan melayani rute domestik maupun internasional, termasuk rute Singapura dan Jepang.

Sementara itu,  Ketua Komite Penanganan COVID-19 dan Pemulihan Ekonomi Nasional (KPCPEN) Erick Thohir mengungkapkan apresiasinya terhadap inisiatif yang dijalankan Garuda Indonesia tersebut. ”Apresiasi setinggi-tingginya dari Komite kepada Garuda Indonesia yang ikut berperan aktif mensosialisasikan penggunaan masker dengan cara yang unik. Rencananya selain di dalam negeri, akan juga ada rute yang ke luar negeri. Hal ini sangat baik, agar masyarakat dunia juga tahu, bahwa Indonesia menomor satukan penanganan kesehatan,” ungkap Erick.

Selain penggunaan masker, Garuda Indonesia juga memastikan protokol kesehatan berjalan optimal pada seluruh lini operasional penerbangan. Misalnya melalui prosedur pengaturan jaga jarak antar penumpang, penggunaan alat pelindung diri (APD) bagi crew yang bertugas, penyediaan makanan dalam wadah sekali pakai dan penyajian dengan tanpa kontak erat.

Selain itu ada juga kegiatan disinfeksi kabin pesawat yang dilakukan secara rutin serta melalui edukasi terhadap penumpang terkait sistem filtrasi udara di pesawat yang mampu menyaring debu, partikel dan virus hingga mencapai 99,97 persen.

Lebih lanjut dalam rangka mengoptimalkan kampanye penggunaan masker tersebut, Garuda Indonesia menyelenggarakan kompetisi desain livery masker pesawat bertajuk “Fly Your Design Through The Sky” yang dilaksanakan sepanjang bulan Oktober 2020.

Melalui gelaran kompetisi tersebut, Garuda Indonesia turut memberikan kesempatan kepada masyarakat untuk menampilkan hasil kreativitas dan desain livery masker pesawat melalui platform media sosial yang nantinya desain masker livery terbaik akan dipilih untuk dapat digunakan Garuda Indonesia pada pesawat lainnya.

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Penulis : Akhdi Martin Pratama
Editor : Yoga Sukmana