Coronavirus: How clean is the plane you are travelling in? Airlines asked to deep clean aircraft every 24 hours

Yash Shukla

Coronavirus outbreak: Airlines asked to deep clean aircraft regularly! Aviation regulator DGCA has issued detailed guidelines to airlines asking them to step up measures to prevent the spread of novel Coronavirus. Airlines have been asked to deep clean every plane at least once in 24 hours and provide uninterrupted supply of hand sanitisers in the lavatories and galleys of the plane, PTI reported. DGCA has also asked carriers to procure at least one universal precaution kit on every plane to be worn by crew members handling suspected positive cases of the Coronavirus and disposing the infectious contents from the plane.

The airlines have also been impressed upon to provide their crew members with masks and hand-gloves in "sufficient quantity". The crew members and air hostess have been asked to keep interaction with passengers at bare minimum.

Aircraft arriving in India from abroad have been ordered to be deep cleaned after their arrival. Deep cleaning and disinfection must be undertaken of all aircraft arriving from abroad upon their arrival, the circular says. In case of aircraft halts during transit, the planes must be sanitised when there are no passengers on board, the circular added. In case transit passengers are on board, the at least the galleries and lavatories should be disinfected, DGCA has instructed.

Air travel has potentially been the biggest carrier of the deadly Coronavirus or COVID-19 which originated from China and slowly took all the continents into its grip. Most countries have banned the entry of passengers from the worst affected countries such as China, Italy and Iran. India has also suspended visas till April 15. Those who have already arrived in the country have been mandatorily quarantined for at least 15 days by the government. The lock down to prevent the virus spread is expected to take harsher forms in the coming days.