Why you can barely get infected on an airliner, let alone in private flights
Airlines restart slowly after Corona break. Many travelers are afraid of being infected on board, although the risk of infection is minimal.
Aircraft cabin: air almost as virus-free as in the operating room.
Anyone who flies a lot has certainly experienced it several times: shortly after his return, he caught you – cold, or flu. And where should the infection have happened if not on the plane? After all, you sat in a confined space with hundreds of other people. In private flights, not only do you share the space with a maximum of ten people, but you can measure the potential risks, knowing their origin.
But it’s actually unlikely to get infected on an airplane – at least if you follow a few rules, because the air in the aircraft cabins is relatively clean. Almost all airliners have filters called suspension or hepa (high efficiency particulate absorbtion). They filter 99.97% of all hazardous particles in the cabin.
The droplets don’t travel as far
The entire aircraft air is exchanged every three minutes. According to the Iata Aviation Association, it is therefore comparable to that of an operating room in a hospital. In addition, air flows from the ceiling to the floor. This means that the droplets through which viruses are transmitted do not fly as far as in rooms without such air circulation.
According to Iata, the current pandemic has also shown that infection rates on board aircraft are very low. A survey of 18 major airlines revealed no passenger-to-passenger transfers, but only transfers of passengers to crew members and between pilots.
No passenger-to-passenger infection
In a more detailed survey, the association carried out a survey of 1100 passengers who tested positive for the new corona virus after a flight. No infections were found among the approximately 100,000 passengers who traveled with the affected people. According to Iata, only two crew members were infected. The investigation was carried out between January and March, while air traffic had not yet stopped.
The fact that only crews are affected by the infection also shows where the greatest risk of infection is located on the plane: in direct contact with infected people. It goes without saying that the personnel on board private flights come into contact with a number of people at least 20 times smaller than that of the personnel of an airliner. The compulsory wearing of face masks can therefore protect against transmission. You should also pay attention to the distance rules when entering and leaving.
Viruses and bacteria can also come into contact through surfaces, because pathogens can survive there for a while. Many airlines have now adjusted their cleaning routines and disinfect their cabins as standard after each flight.