Virus Alerts from Airline Travel


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6 hours ago, Jaydee said:

A wise instructor once told me when something goes wrong, always consider the source. In this case it's CNN. If it's possible to put a negative slant on something Trump related,, they are always at the front of the line.  Always.

Do you know what “low hanging fruit” is? They’re masters at harvesting it and Trump has provided an ample supply.

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N.S. warns of potential COVID-19 exposure on Sept. 30 flight from Toronto

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By Karla Renic Global News
Posted October 10, 2020 8:10 am
 

Nova Scotia health officials are advising residents of a potential exposure to the coronavirus on an Air Canada flight on Sept. 30.

Officials say the flight AC626 departed from Toronto at 9 p.m. and landed in Halifax at 12:14 a.m. on Oct. 1.

Passengers in rows 25 through 30, seats D, E and F are more likely to have had close contact, says a news release.

Public health advises passengers in those seats to call 811 for advicevice on hosting Thanksgiving amid pandemic

Coronavirus: Nova Scotia’s top doctor provides advice on hosting Thanksgiving amid pandemic

According to the release, anyone exposed to the virus on this flight may develop symptoms up to Oct. 15.

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Press Release No: 81
Date: 8 October 2020

Research Points to Low Risk for COVID-19 Transmission Inflight

passengers-mask.jpg?w=280&h=184&mode=crop&scale=both&v=20200728083138

Translations:

Manufacturer studies provide insight into extremely few incidents of COVID-19 inflight infections.

 

Geneva - The International Air Transport Association (IATA) demonstrated the low incidence of inflight COVID-19 transmission with an updated tally of published cases. Since the start of 2020 there have been 44 cases of COVID-19 reported in which transmission is thought to have been associated with a flight journey (inclusive of confirmed, probable and potential cases). Over the same period some 1.2 billion passengers have traveled.

“The risk of a passenger contracting COVID-19 while onboard appears very low. With only 44 identified potential cases of flight-related transmission among 1.2 billion travelers, that’s one case for every 27 million travelers. We recognize that this may be an underestimate but even if 90% of the cases were un-reported, it would be one case for every 2.7 million travelers. We think these figures are extremely reassuring.  Furthermore, the vast majority of published cases occurred before the wearing of face coverings inflight became widespread,” said Dr. David Powell, IATA’s Medical Advisor.

New insight into why the numbers are so low has come from the joint publication by Airbus, Boeing and Embraer of separate computational fluid dynamics (CFD) research conducted by each manufacturer in their aircraft. While methodologies differed slightly, each detailed simulation confirmed that aircraft airflow systems do control the movement of particles in the cabin, limiting the spread of viruses. Data from the simulations yielded similar results: 

  • Aircraft airflow systems, High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters, the natural barrier of the seatback, the downward flow of air, and high rates of air exchange efficiently reduce the risk of disease transmission on board in normal times.
  • The addition of mask-wearing amid pandemic concerns adds a further and significant extra layer of protection, which makes being seated in close proximity in an aircraft cabin safer than most other indoor environments.

Data Collection

IATA’s data collection, and the results of the separate simulations, align with the low numbers reported in a recently published peer-reviewed study by Freedman and Wilder-Smith in the Journal of Travel Medicine. Although there is no way to establish an exact tally of possible flight-associated cases, IATA’s outreach to airlines and public health authorities combined with a thorough review of available literature has not yielded any indication that onboard transmission is in any way common or widespread. Further, the Freedman/Wilder-Smith study points to the efficacy of mask-wearing in further reducing risk.

Layered Approach of Preventive Measures

Mask-wearing on board was recommended by IATA in June and is a common requirement on most airlines since the subsequent publication and implementation of the Takeoff Guidance by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). This guidance adds multiple layers of protection on top of the airflow systems which already ensure a safe cabin environment with very low risks of inflight transmission of disease.
 

“ICAO’s comprehensive guidance for safe air travel amid the COVID-19 crisis relies on multiple layers of protection, which involve the airports as well as the aircraft. Mask-wearing is one of the most visible. But managed queuing, contactless processing, reduced movement in the cabin, and simplified onboard services are among the multiple measures the aviation industry is taking to keep flying safe. And this is on top of the fact that airflow systems are designed to avoid the spread of disease with high air flow rates and air exchange rates, and highly effective filtration of any recycled air,” said Powell.

Aircraft design characteristics add a further layer of protection contributing to the low incidence of inflight transmission. These include:

  • Limited face-to-face interactions as passengers face forward and move about very little
  • The effect of the seat-back acting as a physical barrier to air movement from one row to another
  • The minimization of forward-aft flow of air, with a segmented flow design which is directed generally downward from ceiling to floor
  • The high rate of fresh air coming into the cabin. Air is exchanged 20-30 times per hour on board most aircraft, which compares very favorably with the average office space (average 2-3 times per hour) or schools (average 10-15 times per hour).
  • The use of HEPA filters which have more than 99.9% bacteria/virus removal efficiency rate ensuring that the air supply entering the cabin is not a pathway for introducing microbes.

Manufacturer Studies

The interaction of those design factors in creating a uniquely low-risk environment had been intuitively understood but not previously modeled prior to the CFD simulations by the three major manufacturers in each of their aircraft cabins.
 

The following are highlights from the manufacturers’ research:

Airbus

Airbus used CFD to create a highly accurate simulation of the air in an A320 cabin, to see how droplets resulting from a cough move within the cabin airflow. The simulation calculated parameters such as air speed, direction and temperature at 50 million points in the cabin, up to 1,000 times per second.

Airbus then used the same tools to model a non-aircraft environment, with several individuals keeping six feet (1.8 meters) distance between them. The result was that potential exposure was lower when seated side by side on a plane than when staying six feet apart in an environment such as an office, classroom or grocery store.

“After multiple, highly-detailed simulations using the most accurate scientific methods available, we have concrete data which reveals the aircraft cabin offers a much safer environment than indoor public spaces,” said Bruno Fargeon, Airbus Engineering and the leader of the Airbus Keep Trust in Air Travel Initiative. “The way that air circulates, is filtered and replaced on airplanes creates an absolutely unique environment in which you have just as much protection being seated side-by-side as you would standing six feet apart on the ground.”

Boeing

Using CFD, Boeing researchers tracked how particles from coughing and breathing move around the airplane cabin. Various scenarios were studied including the coughing passenger with and without a mask, the coughing passenger located in various seats including the middle seat, and different variations of passengers’ individual overhead air vents (known as gaspers) on and off.

“This modeling determined the number of cough particles that entered the breathing space of the other passengers”, said Dan Freeman, the chief engineer for Boeing’s Confident Travel Initiative.  “We then compared a similar scenario in other environments, such as an office conference room. Based on the airborne particle count, passengers sitting next to one another on an airplane is the same as standing more than seven feet (or two meters) apart in a typical building environment.”

Embraer

Using CFD, cabin air flow and droplet dispersion models validated in full-scale cabin environment testing, Embraer analyzed the cabin environment considering a coughing passenger in several different seats and air flow conditions in our different aircraft to measure these variables and their effect. The research Embraer completed shows that risk of onboard transmission is extremely low, and the actual data on in-flight transmissions that may have occurred, supports these findings.

Luis Carlos Affonso, Senior Vice-President of Engineering, Technology and Strategy, Embraer, said, "The human need to travel, to connect, and to see our loved ones has not disappeared. In fact, at times like this, we need our families and friends even more. Our message today is that because of the technology and procedures in place, you can fly safely – all the research demonstrates this.  In fact, the cabin of a commercial aircraft is one of the safer spaces available anywhere during this pandemic."

Safety is Always the Top Priority


This research effort demonstrates the cooperation and dedication to safety of all involved in air transport and provides evidence that cabin air is safe.

Aviation earns its reputation on safety with each and every flight. This is not different for flying in the time of COVID-19. A recent IATA study found that 86% of recent travelers felt that the industry’s COVID-19 measures were keeping them safe and were well-implemented.

“There is no single silver-bullet measure that will enable us to live and travel safely in the age of COVID-19. But the combination of measures that are being put in place is reassuring travelers the world over that COVID-19 has not defeated their freedom to fly. Nothing is completely risk-free. But with just 44 published cases of potential inflight COVID-19 transmission among 1.2 billion travelers, the risk of contracting the virus on board appears to be in the same category as being struck by lightning,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO.


“The detailed computational fluid dynamics research of the aircraft manufacturers demonstrates that combining the aircraft’s existing design features with mask-wearing creates a low-risk environment for COVID-19 transmission. As always, airlines, manufacturers and every entity involved in aviation will be guided by science and global best practices to keep flying safe for passengers and crew,” said de Juniac.

 

For more information, please contact:

IATA

Corporate Communications
Tel: +41 22 770 2967
Email: corpcomms@iata.org
www.iata.org

Airbus

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Until this type of news article goes away, people will continue to be very leery about flying.

Potential coronavirus exposure reported on 2 Air Canada flights from Toronto to Halifax

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By Aya Al-Hakim Global News
Posted October 17, 2020 11:44 am
Nova Scotia Health is advising of potential COVID-19 exposure on flights from Toronto to Halifax on Oct. 12.

In a statement released on Saturday, NSHA said the potential exposures have been identified on the following flights:

  • Air Canada flight 610 on Oct. 12 from Toronto to Halifax
  • Air Canada flight 604 on Oct. 12 from Toronto to Halifax

The Air Canada Flight 610 departed Toronto at 2:10 p.m., health officials said.

Public Health said that passengers in rows 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 seats D, E, F on that particular flight are more likely to have had close contact.

The second flight departed Toronto at 8 a.m., with passengers in rows 27, 28, 29, 30 seats A, B and C being most likely to have had close contact — they’re being asked to self-monitor for symptoms.

It is anticipated that anyone exposed to the virus on the two flights may develop symptoms up to, and including, 14 days afterward.

COVID-19 symptoms include:

  • Fever (chills, sweats, etc.)
  • Cough (new or worsening)
  • Sore throat
  • Headache
  • Shortness of breath
  • Muscle aches
  • Sneezing
  • Nasal congestion or runny nose
  • Hoarse voice
  • Diarrhea
  • Unusual fatigue
  • Loss of sense of smell or taste
  • Red, purple or blueish lesions, on the feet, toes or fingers without a clear cause
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Yet another warning but no follow-up proof of any infections caused by the possible exposure.  What about crews, are any being infected or ?

Potential coronavirus exposure reported on WestJet flight from Toronto to Halifax

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By Aya Al-Hakim Global News
Posted October 24, 2020 12:24 pm
cotia Health Public Health said it is advising of potential exposure to COVID-19 on WestJet flight 254 on Oct. 17 from Toronto to Halifax.

According to health officials, the flight departed Toronto at 21:45 p.m., landing in Halifax at 12:47 a.m. on Oct. 18.

 

Passengers in rows 1 to 5 seats A, B, C, D are more likely to have had close contact, according to Public Health.

“Passengers in these seats are asked to call 811 for advice and to continue to self-isolate.”

Public Health said it is anticipated that anyone exposed to the virus on these flights may develop symptoms up to and including Oct. 31.

“Those present on this flight but not in the identified rows and seats should continue to self-isolate as required and self-monitor for signs and symptoms of COVID-19.”

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59 infections linked to summer flight into Ireland, report shows

The coronavirus outbreak was linked to a 7.5 hour flight from the Middle East to Ireland

A new report has detailed how 59 people became infected with Covid-19 associated with a flight into Ireland during the summer.

The study, published by European scientific journal Eurosurveillance in cooperation with the Health Service Executive, said it demonstrates how in-flight transmission of the virus can happen.

The outbreak was linked to a 7.5 hour flight from the Middle East to Ireland, which had only 49 of the 283 seats occupied, 17% of the capacity.

Thirteen people who were on board the aircraft were later diagnosed with coronavirus.

Most of them had been travelling together in small groups, but were sitting in different areas on the plane.

The first of the cases was detected after two of the passengers developed symptoms 48 hours after arriving in Ireland.

A further 11 passengers were subsequently diagnosed with the virus, but the study said "the source case is not known".

The age of the 13 flight cases ranged from one to 65 years and at least nine of the passengers involved had been wearing masks.

As a result of the positive tests, passengers who were deemed close contacts and defined as two seats in every direction from the cases, were also tested.

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The report said 15 passengers returned results that did not detect the virus, one passenger declined to be tested while 11 other passengers were not contactable.

And following a risk assessment, the 12 crew members on board were advised to quarantine for 14 days.

Some of the 13 infected passengers passed Covid-19 onto 46 other people, who they were subsequently in contact with following their flight.

One of the passengers involved passed the virus to three members of their household, of which one of those passed it onto 25 others while staying in what was described as "shared accommodation".

 

In total, 59 cases were linked to the flight.

Four of the people were hospitalised and one of those was admitted to an intensive care unit.

The report said "the latest case in the entire outbreak occurred 17 days after the flight".

Eurosurveillance said: "Air travel has accelerated the global pandemic, contributing to the spread of coronavirus disease" and the authors said this outbreak "demonstrates in-flight transmission".

It said: "This study is one of few thus far demonstrating in-flight transmission of SARS-CoV-2 (Covid-19) with extensive onwards transmission. In-flight propagation patterns merit further study."

It also said that "rapid contact tracing can limit onward spread" and that "requires swift acquisition of the flight manifest".

However, Eurosurveillance said: "Contact details in airline manifests can be deficient. In this outbreak, 11 flight passengers could not be contacted and were consequently not tested."

The report said the "incubation period for Covid-19 may be as short as two days, so the potential for in-flight/airport transmission exists in this outbreak" because the onset of the first symptoms happened within 48 hours of the flight.

It also said that "in-flight transmission is a plausible exposure" for two of the groups who tested positive, given their seating arrangements.

Eurosurveillance said: "Following this outbreak, Ireland augmented ECDC guidance for a three-month period to include an alert informing all passengers of a positive case on board and emphasising Ireland's 14-day restriction-of-movement policy in place for all those travelling from abroad, apart from a regularly reviewed shortlist of countries."

And the study also concluded that distancing and restricted crew and passenger interaction, along with the wearing of face coverings, can contribute to prevention of Covid-19 transmission in-flight.

 

More stories on

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  • 3 weeks later...

Canada's chief public health officer said today there's little evidence — if any — of COVID-19 transmission among passengers travelling by air.

Speaking to reporters at a COVID-19 briefing, Dr. Theresa Tam said that while the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) is aware of reports that some COVID-19-infected people have travelled to Canada by air, there have been few documented cases of the virus actually being passed to others travelling on those same flights.

The full article is at:  https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/covid-transmission-flights-extremely-rare-1.5797065?cmp=rss

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Some tourists using fake negative COVID-19 tests to get around travel restrictions, authorities say

Published Thursday, November 12, 2020 1:14PM EST

 

TORONTO -- With most countries making a negative COVID-19 test mandatory for passengers travelling by air, some tourists are reportedly obtaining fake test results to get around entry requirements.

Instead of securing a negative PCR test, which may be difficult in time for departure, some travellers are buying counterfeit test results at the airport or from travel agents with instances being reported in Brazil, France and the U.K.

Authorities warn the dangerous practice puts other passengers at risk of contracting the virus despite travel restrictions being in place.

In France, at Paris' Charles de Gaulle Airport, a group of seven people were arrested in September for selling falsified digital certificates intended to prove negative coronavirus test results, according to The Associated Press.

The group was discovered following an investigation sparked by a traveller leaving France for Ethiopia. The traveller had a fake digital certificate that claimed they tested negative for the virus.

The group was reportedly selling the counterfeit test results for US$180 to $360 apiece.

The seven people have since been charged with fraud and forgery. They face up to five years in prison and a maximum fine of US$445,000 if convicted.

Falsified COVID-19 test results have also popped up in South America.

The Associated Press reported that a group of Brazilian travellers were jailed in October for presenting falsified negative test results in an attempt to enter the island of Fernando de Noronha on a private jet.

The island reopened to tourists on Oct. 10 and requires entrants to provide negative COVID-19 test results no older than 24 hours.

Rather than buying fake test results, the group has been accused by local authorities of altering their own results.

In yet another case, a U.K. man told The Lancashire Telegraph that he had doctored the results of a friend's test in order to travel to Pakistan. The newspaper also spoke to another traveller who was offered a fake document by their travel agent.

"You can simply get their negative test and change the name and birth date to your own. You also put a test date on which is within the time limit required," the unnamed man explained in an interview with the newspaper.

"You download the email, change it and then print it."

The man said he doctored the results of his friend’s test because, during the time he needed to travel, PCR tests were reserved for essential workers or people with symptoms.

"People are doing this as you can't get a COVID test if you have to travel to Pakistan in case of an emergency. It is difficult to get one unless you are a key worker,” he said.

However, as test-result protocols for travel become stricter amid second and third waves across the world, authorities say it is unlikely that many tourists will be able to travel with manipulated documents.

Hawaii, for example, now requires visitors to preregister in their online testing program using an approved testing partner, and upload COVID-19 test results to a digital portal. Paper copies are not accepted.

With files from The Associated Press

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On 11/10/2020 at 5:05 PM, Malcolm said:

Canada's chief public health officer said today there's little evidence — if any — of COVID-19 transmission among passengers travelling by air.

 

Just wait.  By next week she'll be saying that transmission amongst airline passengers is responsible for the whole pandemic.  (Sorry, does that make me sound skeptical?)

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2 hours ago, seeker said:

Just wait.  By next week she'll be saying that transmission amongst airline passengers is responsible for the whole pandemic.  (Sorry, does that make me sound skeptical?)

And they say medicine is a science......  😀

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I don't understand why it's so hard to believe that the methods for dealing with a never before seen virus will evolve over time, some for purely scientific reasons, others because there are multiple factors driving the guidance (like a PPE shortage). I for one am generally satisfied with the response of our collective governments in this country as compared to the debacle that has taken place to our south. Has it been perfect? Not hardly, but at least it feels like they actually care about people.

Edited by J.O.
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Just now, J.O. said:

I don't understand why it's so hard to believe that the methods for dealing with a never before seen virus will evolve over time, some for purely scientific reasons, others because there are multiple factors driving the guidance (like a PPE shortage). I for one am generally satisfied with the response of our collective governments in this country over the debacle that has taken place to our south.

Not saying I wasn't satisfied but the changes are sometimes puzzling and not all published FROM / promoted by "REAL MEDICAL RESEARCH"

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1 hour ago, J.O. said:

I don't understand why it's so hard to believe that the methods for dealing with a never before seen virus will evolve over time, some for purely scientific reasons, others because there are multiple factors driving the guidance (like a PPE shortage).

Most people, myself included, don't take well to being jerked around.  Telling me there's a reason for jerking me around and for giving me false information - for outright lying to me because of some agenda doesn't make it easier for me to accept or likely that I will trust you in the future.

Dr. Tam told us in the spring that masks don't work to prevent a run on PPE.  Then, when they had a supply for the medical community, gave guidance that masks were essential.  Now she says there's no risk to air travel (I paraphrase).  How do we know she's not working some other agenda?  That's the point of my comment about her flipping to the opposite opinion next week.

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Here is one solution to help with airline travel but it will never fly, (pun intended), because there isn't some large company making money on it.

Preliminary experiments in the first major wave of infections earlier in the year suggested the dogs can detect the virus with close to 100 per cent accuracy, up to five days earlier than a PCR test.

https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/coronavirus/finland-s-covid-sniffer-dog-trial-extremely-positive-researchers-1.5164577#:~:text=Finland's COVID sniffer dog trial 'extremely positive'%3A researchers&text=VANTAA%2C FINLAND -- A pilot,travellers%2C researchers said on Wednesday.

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Flight passengers with COVID-19: WestJet releases flight list

BY ANGELA STEWART

Posted Nov 18, 2020 2:36 pm MST

 

Last Updated Nov 18, 2020 at 2:37 pm MST

 
JFJ11081710.jpg
A WestJet plane takes off from Vancouver International Airport in Vancouver on Monday, May 13, 2019. Federal transport officials have issued the first fines to air passengers who refused to wear face masks on Canadian flights, in violation of a government order to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
 
The story line says infected with, does it really mean exposed to?????

CALGARY (660 NEWS) – WestJet has released a list of flights to and from Calgary in the month of November where passengers were infected with COVID-19.

About 16 flights were impacted between the time of Nov. 2 to Nov. 14.

The full list of flights includes:

  • Calgary to Grande Prairie on Nov. 2.
  • Calgary to Kelowna on Nov. 2.
  • Calgary to Vancouver on Nov. 4.
  • Calgary to Ottawa on Nov. 6.
  • Cancun to Calgary on Nov. 7.
  • Calgary to Kamloops on Nov. 7.
  • Calgary to Vancouver on Nov. 8.
  • Toronto to Calgary on Nov. 8.
  • Calgary to Victoria on Nov. 8.
  • Puerto Vallarta to Calgary on Nov. 8.
  • Winnipeg to Calgary on Nov. 8.
  • Calgary to Vancouver on Nov. 9.
  • Calgary to Winnipeg on Nov. 9.
  • Calgary to Vancouver on Nov. 9.
  • Winnipeg to Calgary on Nov. 9.
  • Calgary to Victoria on Nov. 14.

 

Many of the flights are domestic, with many of them from B.C and a few coming from spots in Mexico.

A full list of the affected flights can be found on the WestJet website.

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WestJet notifies passengers of more flights impacted by COVID-19

BY TOM ROSS

Posted Nov 25, 2020 2:31 pm MST

 

Last Updated Nov 25, 2020 at 2:34 pm MST

 
20200915140952-5f610d722a60846f979d9347jpeg.jpg
A WestJet flight from Calgary arrives at Halifax Stanfield International Airport in Enfield, N.S. on Monday, July 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
 
 

CALGARY (660 NEWS) — There have been six more WestJet flights over the past week either to or from Calgary that included passengers with COVID-19.

The Calgary-based airline said the flights were between Nov. 14 and 19, and they are all domestic.

RELATED: Flight passengers with COVID-19: WestJet releases flight list

Rows that are considered close contacts to the positive case are also included, and if you were seated in these rows you are advised to go into isolation, monitor for symptoms and get further direction from Alberta Health Services.

The impacted flights are listed here, and can also be found on WestJet’s website:

  • Calgary to Victoria on Nov. 14.
  • Calgary to Vancouver on Nov. 14.
  • Calgary to Kamloops on Nov. 15.
  • Grande Prairie to Calgary on Nov. 15.
  • Calgary to Comox on Nov. 15.
  • Vancouver to Calgary on Nov. 18.
  • Calgary to Toronto on Nov. 19.
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Thirty incidents of COVID-19 on Calgary flights in one week

BY JO HORWOOD

Posted Nov 29, 2020 5:37 pm MST

 

Last Updated Nov 29, 2020 at 5:38 pm MST

 
Calgary-Airport-SAIF-e1593090079661.jpg
A look outside the Calgary International Airport. (PHOTO: Crystal Laderas, CityNews)
 
 

CALGARY (CityNews) – Within just one week of reporting from the Government of Canada, Calgary’s airport has seen thirty flights carrying confirmed cases of COVID-19.

Edmonton reported only three in the same time frame.

International flights saw a drastic spike in Calgary, with more reports of positive cases on flights from November 18 to 26 than was reported for the entire month of October.

In a single week, Calgary saw 17 domestic flights and 13 international flights with confirmed cases.

Some days were clear of any affected flights through the province, while others saw up to seven a day.

A full list of affected flights is below.

All passengers on flights with confirmed cases of COVID-19 are advised to self-monitor for symptoms.

 

DOMESTIC

November 18:

WestJet WS126 – Vancouver to Calgary (rows 1-6)

WestJet WS3254 – Calgary to Saskatoon (rows unknown)

WestJet WS3270 – Calgary to Regina (rows unknown)

Canadian North Airlines 5T1763 – Fort MacKay/Albian to Edmonton (rows unknown)

Air Canada AC202 – Vancouver to Calgary (rows 13-19)

 

November 19:

WestJet WS652 – Calgary to Toronto (rows 1-5)

WestJet WS3179 – Calgary to Grande Prairie (rows 16-19, 24-30)

Air Canada AC225 – Calgary to Vancouver (rows 13-19)

Air Canada AC178 – Edmonton to Toronto (rows unknown)

Air Canada AC140 – Calgary to Toronto (rows 18-21)

 

November 20:

WestJet WS3171 – Calgary to Comox (rows 3-9)

WestJet WS119 – Calgary to Vancouver (rows 4-10)

WestJet WS3144 – Fort McMurray to Calgary (rows unknown)

Flair Airlines F8102 – Calgary to Vancouver (rows 9-15)

 

November 23:

WestJet WS669 – Toronto to Calgary (rows 5-11)

WestJet WS658 – Calgary to Toronto (rows 1-7)

WestJet WS3349 – Edmonton to Victoria (rows 8-14)

Air Canada AC144 – Calgary to Toronto (rows unknown)

 

November 24:

Air Canada AC317 – Montreal to Calgary (rows unknown)

Air Canada AC318 – Calgary to Montreal (rows unknown)

 

INTERNATIONAL

November 18:

United Airlines UA5388 – Denver to Calgary (rows 14-22)

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines KL677 – Amsterdam to Calgary (rows 22-28)

 

November 19:

WestJet WS1403 – Phoenix to Calgary (rows 24-29)

American Airlines AA3839 – Dallas to Calgary (rows 7-13, 16-22)

 

November 20:

WestJet WS1511/DL7179 – Los Angeles to Calgary (rows 2-8)

American Airlines AA3839 – Dallas to Calgary (rows unknown)

 

November 21:

WestJet WS2313 – Cancun to Calgary (rows 22-28)

United Airlines UA5388 – Denver to Calgary (rows 4-10)

 

November 22:

WestJet WS2311 – Cancun to Calgary (rows 1-15)

WestJet WS1403 – Phoenix to Calgary (rows 7-13)

United Airlines UA5388 – Denver to Calgary (rows 15-21)

 

November 23:

United Airlines UA5388 – Denver to Calgary (rows 17-23)

 

November 24:

Delta DL4051 – Minneapolis to Calgary (rows 7-13)

 
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Thirteen new B.C. flight exposures added on Saturday

From The Vancouver Sun – link to source story

The B.C. Centre for Disease Control added thirteen new flights in or out of Vancouver to its COVID-19 exposures list.

Harrison Mooney  •  Nov 29, 2020

RICHMOND,BC:AUGUST 5, 2020 -- Airline passengers wearing face masks make their way around Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, BC, August, 5, 2020. (Richard Lam/PNG) (For ) 00062150A [PNG Merlin Archive] The B.C. Centre for Disease Control added thirteen new flights in or out of Vancouver to its COVID-19 exposures list. PHOTO BY RICHARD LAM /PNG

The B.C. Centre for Disease Control added 13 new flights in or out of Vancouver to its COVID-19 exposure list.

Some flights added Saturday took place two weeks ago. Air Canada 45 from Delhi to Vancouver and Air Canada 114 from Vancouver to Toronto both flew on Nov. 15.

Others are more recent. Air Canada 8417 from Kelowna to Vancouver flew Nov. 27.

Flights added on Saturday include:

• Nov 15: Air Canada 45, Delhi to Vancouver.
• Nov 15: Air Canada 114, Vancouver to Toronto.
• Nov 17: Air Canada 314 , Vancouver to Montreal.
• Nov 17: Air Canada 8421, Kelowna to Vancouver.
• Nov 18: Air Canada 202, Vancouver to Calgary.
• Nov 19: Air Canada 103, Vancouver to Toronto.
• Nov 19: Air Canada 114 , Vancouver to Toronto.
• Nov 19: Air Canada 225 , Calgary to Vancouver.
• Nov 20: Flair 8102, Calgary to Vancouver.
• Nov 22: Air Canada 1126, Kelowna to Vancouver.
• Nov 25: Cathay Pacific 865, Vancouver to Hong Kong.
• Nov 25: United Airlines 1641, Denver to Vancouver.
• Nov 27: Air Canada 8417, Kelowna to Vancouver.

Those on-board an international flight flagged for a COVID-19 exposure are required to self-isolate and watch for symptoms for 14 days. Those on-board a domestic flight flagged for a COVID-19 exposure aren’t required to self-isolate but must monitor themselves closely for possible symptoms.

Exposure events of this nature are relatively common in B.C. The province has averaged more than one a day since October.

More than 100 domestic and international flights with a case of COVID-19 have flown in or out of Vancouver in the last two months.

 

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Good news if the trend continues to go down. Note however the remark about passport holders.

Quote

Most of the visitors held American passports, followed by 18,000 from China, 2,000 from Italy and 1,600 from Vietnam.

COVID flights landing at Canadian airports continue downward trend

From Toronto Sun – link to source story

Bryan Passifiume  •  Nov 30, 2020

air-canada-1-scaled-e1606760341963.jpg?q An Air Canada plane prepares to take off at the Benito Juarez International airport, in Mexico City, amid the COVID-19 pandemic, May 20, 2020. PHOTO BY PEDRO PARDO /AFP via Getty Images

Sixteen domestic and seven international flights with passengers infected with COVID-19 landed at Canadian airports over the past week, according to Health Canada.

That’s more than the week prior, when five international and six domestic flights had positive cases, but down overall from previous weeks.

Since Nov. 23, four infected flights landed in Toronto — Air Canada 144 and WestJet 658, both from Calgary, Emirates 241 from Dubai on Nov. 23, and WestJet 436 from Edmonton on Nov. 24.

The same number of flights landed at Vancouver, evenly split between domestic and international.

Calgary saw the highest number of infected flights with five — two from U.S. destinations and three originating within Canada.

During the same time period, five international flights originating in Canada carried infected passengers.

Montreal, the fourth Canadian airport still permitted to land international flights, saw three flights with COVID-positive passengers last week.

Winnipeg, London, St. John’s, Charlottetown and Victoria each saw one domestic flight with infected passengers.

Health Canada’s online infected flight data is not exhaustive, and is sourced from local public health agencies and public websites.

Data is deleted after two weeks, and does not list how many passengers on board tested positive, only — when available — row number ranges of where the infected person may have sat.

Despite federal coronavirus orders restricting who can board flights to Canada, 335,872 people described as “neither Canadian citizens nor residents” arrived at Canadian airports between March 22 and Sept. 30.

Most of these were international students or flight crews, but 22% came for “personal reasons” to visit, attend meetings or conferences, 14% were legal immigrants, and 9% were workers.

Most of the visitors held American passports, followed by 18,000 from China, 2,000 from Italy and 1,600 from Vietnam.

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FLYING BLIND DURING COVID-19

Authorities are willing to let Canadians stay in the dark when fellow travellers become ill after flight. That's a very curious thing

  • Calgary Herald
  • 3 Dec 2020
  • JOHN IVISON Comment
img?regionKey=3fvwvwLETte48cw5Q1dVsw%3d%3dPETER J THOMPSON/NATIONAL POST A flight takes off from Toronto Pearson International Airport on Tuesday.

The airline industry is at pains to point out that the risk of COVID infection on a plane is lower than that in an office building, classroom or commuter train, in large part because of the aggressive air filtration and circulation systems on aircraft.

But in-flight transmission is not unknown and the Public Health Agency of Canada posts a list of flights where flyers were later found to have tested positive for COVID-19 (though as airlines are quick to point out, that doesn't mean they contracted it on board).

The curious thing is that nobody seems to think passengers should be alerted if a person sitting close to them becomes sick.

Air Canada said it provides flight manifestos to Canadian health authorities “upon request” within 24 hours but does not contact passengers directly.

The PHAC said follow-ups are done by local health authorities.

Not so, say a number of provincial and municipal health agencies.

British Columbia's Provincial Health Services Authority said that since late March, passengers seated near a case of COVID-19 are no longer notified of their potential exposure. “Instead, that information is posted online,” said Vincent Chou, media relations at PHSA.

Toronto Public Health provided a similar response. It called off its contact tracing efforts, outside of “congregate settings” — long-term care homes, child care centres, schools and hospitals — as a temporary measure in early October. Full contact tracing has yet to resume.

When it comes to flights, Dr. Vinita Dubey, associate medical officer of health, said that TPH will follow up with the infected individual and inform the province, which in turn passes on the information to the PHAC so it can post the exposures on its website. “Travelers are asked to check this website after arriving in Canada,” she said.

Ottawa Public Health said it notifies travellers according to provincial guidelines, which determine that no public health followup is required for those already in quarantine.

That obviously does not cover domestic flights carrying people who later test positive, such as the Westjet flight that landed in Ottawa from Calgary on November 23.

The Ontario guidelines fall back on the COVID app to notify people who have come into contact with a someone who has tested positive. But the federal app has its own shortcomings — it has not been adopted by a number of provinces, including British Columbia and Alberta, and it is under-used in provinces where it is available.

The other surprising thing about the lack of communication between airlines, health authorities and passengers is the sheer number of flights affected — in the past two weeks, 74 domestic flights and 71 international flights were discovered to have carried a person who was, or became, infected.

On three flights on three separate days — Nov. 20, 22 and 23 — Qatar Airlines' flights arrived in Montreal from Doha carrying passengers who subsequently tested positive.

Seven flights have landed in Canada from Cancun in the past two weeks with people who either were, or subsequently became, sick; there were seven from Denver; six from Delhi and five from San Francisco.

Entry into Canada is restricted to citizens and permanent residents, with certain exemptions for family members, international students and temporary foreign workers. Everyone coming into the country from overseas is obliged to quarantine for two weeks.

But for a country that is officially discouraging non-essential travel, the number of infections connected to airline passengers is strangely high.

Passenger volumes on any given day are down 90 per cent on this time last year but there are still plenty of people flying around — and carrying their germs with them.

The Canada Border Services Agency released new information on Tuesday that suggested 986,989 Canadian citizens and permanent residents entered Canada by air since restrictions were first put in place. Last week, 52,877 people arrived, of whom only 36,485 were citizens or permanent residents.

The bottom line is that, if you have taken a flight, check the Public Health Agency of Canada website to see if someone sitting near you was infected.

Passengers need to be proactive because local public health agencies are too swamped to help. That's symptomatic of a test, trace and isolate system in this country that is flying half-blind.

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My son received an email directly from Swoop 10 days after his flight when a fellow traveller seated two rows away had a positive test. He got tested as a precaution and of course it was negative. However, when I checked the PHAC website, his flight was not listed.

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53 minutes ago, Kip Powick said:

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I think I get it!! With the exception  of Germany, the elected leaders of small and remote countries that are of minimal consequence in the global scheme appear to be women. Is that a trend? Does even noting the fact indicate one is sexist?

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