Inslee implements new flying protocols in the age of COVID


Airline executives to join the press conference at 2:30 p.m.

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PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Governor Jay Inslee is implementing new protocols for the aviation industry as the coronavirus pandemic continues.

“These are baseline requirements that we are rolling out,” Inslee said.

  • Face coverings will be required in all parts of the airport where the public can be.
  • Spacing for physical distancing,
  • Protective barriers between workers and travelers
  • Sanitizing protocols.
  • Encouraging airlines to send passengers health screening questionnaires.

Executives from Alaska Airlines, Delta Airlines and the Port of Seattle participated in Thursday’s press conference about the new protocols.

In a bid to survive, airlines are desperately trying to convince a wary public that measures like mandatory face masks and hospital-grade air filters make sitting in a plane safer than many other indoor settings during the coronavirus pandemic.

It isn’t working.

Surveys indicate that instead of growing comfortable with air travel, more people are becoming skeptical about it. In the United States, airline bookings have stalled through August after slowly rising — a reaction to a new surge of reported virus infections.

Globally, air travel is down more than 85% from a year ago, according to industry figures.

The four largest U.S. airlines lost a combined $10 billion from April through June. Their CEOs say they will survive, but they have lowered their expectations for a rebound.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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