Airborne Illness Risk Reduction from Air Filter System on Aircraft

  • 02:14 AM, 18 Feb, 2020

Hanoi, 15 February 2020 - To ensure onboard air quality and hygiene, aircraft manufacturers Boeing and Airbus have equipped all Vietnam Airlines aircraft with HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) filters upon receipt, which minimizes the risk of airborne bacteria and viruses on flights.

HEPA filters remove up to 99.99% of particles such as dust, pollen, human skin cells, bacterium, and viruses with a minimum size of 0.001 micrometers. According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), HEPA filters equipped in aircraft operate similarly to air filtration systems in surgical operating rooms. Thus, the possibility of becoming ill from airborne impurities on a plane is much lower than other confined spaces.

The World Health Organization (WHO) also affirms that the establishment of HEPA filters on commercial aircraft helps minimize the spread of microbes in the cabin. In addition, the air in the cabin is renewed continuously every three minutes; air flows are designed to enter the cabin vertically, from top to bottom, and circulate horizontally, which contributes to preventing the spread of pollutants along the cabin.

To enhance safety, hygiene, and protect passenger and employee health during the COVID-19 epidemic, Vietnam Airlines has proactively taken a number of measures, such as: disinfecting aircraft returning to Vietnam from mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macao, and Bangkok, as well as any aircraft carrying passengers who have shown signs of abnormal health; adjusting the cockpit and cabin temperature to 26 degrees Celsius; and reducing the serving of meals, drinks, pillows, blankets, and towels on board, etc.

Besides Vietnam Airlines’ efforts, passengers should take preventive measures when arriving at the airport and boarding, such as washing hands regularly and using medical face masks and gloves as per the Ministry of Health’s instructions. To save time and minimize person-to-person contact, passengers can check-in via website, Vietnam Airlines mobile app, kiosk located at the airport; via call center 1900 6265 or at Hanoi or centers.

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