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Coronavirus update: DGCA issues guidelines to airlines on preventive measures

BusinessToday.In     March 18, 2020

All aircraft will now have hand sanitisers and airlines will have to make sure that their flight crews are given Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) like gloves and face masks.

The Director-General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Tuesday had ordered all airlines to place hand sanitisers, in sufficient quantity,  in common areas such as lavatories and galleys. The order says that hand sanitisers should be kept away from sources of heat or ignition. It also said that the availability of soaps in lavatories should be ensured.

The DGCA has mandated that crew members should be advised to keep all passenger interactions to the minimum. Airlines have also been asked to issue guidelines to crew members and ground handling staff in order to minimise public interactions.

"All aircraft shall be equipped with one or more Universal Precaution Kits. Such kits should be used to protect crew members who are assisting potentially infectious cases of suspected COVID-19 and in cleaning up and correctly discarding any potentially infectious contents. All crew members shall be provided with suitable Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in sufficient quantity for use during passenger interaction," the order said.

The DGCA gave these orders in a circular named 'Prevention of the spread of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)'. The circular was issued on Tuesday and said that more preventive measures need to be followed by all scheduled airlines immediately to halt the spread of the virus.

These preventive measures include a renewed focus on disinfecting the aircraft. "All aircraft shall be subjected to Deep-Cleaning and disinfection at least once in 24 hours. All aircraft shall be subjected to disinfection during transit halts when there are no passengers on board," said the order by the DGCA.

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