December 2, 2023
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The U.S. Department of Transportation issued public health guidance to airlines and airports on July 2 to help foster the recovery of the nation’s air transportation system from the public health emergency spawned by the COVID-19 pandemic.

(Photo Credit: Federal Aviation Administration)

The USDOT said its Runway to Recovery document – which includes input from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Homeland Security – provides general guidance and recommends specific public health measures airlines and airports should take to mitigate risks associated with COVID-19 while supporting an increase in travel volume.

Guidance includes: the need for passengers to wear face coverings everywhere in the air transportation environment while practicing social distancing; use of enhanced disinfection and cleaning procedures; requiring health assessments from passengers and employees; plus reporting the daily status of public health risk mitigation efforts.
The USDOT added in a statement that its Runway to Recovery guidance expands on many of the activities that airports and airlines are already doing today and makes clear that these measures should be implemented as soon as possible, if they are not already in place.

The agency also noted that it anticipates the federal government will provide “additional guidance” in collaboration with stakeholders that may call for augmenting or modifying measures as lessons are learned and COVID-19 risk conditions change.

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