New research has uncovered when chances are higher, including during meal service. Overall risks appear to remain relatively low, but newer variants may change that equation.
Fliers have yearned for reliable data on the risks of air travel since the pandemic began. Recent research on Covid-19 transmission on flights suggests that airlines could adopt new policies to better protect their passengers.
Scientists have found a sharp increase in possible spread during in-flight meal service when everyone has masks off. They’ve also learned more about the importance of precautions during boarding and deplaning.
The chances of viral spread aboard planes remain very low. But papers published in medical journals suggest they may not be as low as suggested earlier in the pandemic.
“It’s still, at this point, safe to travel if you take proper precautions,” says Mark Gendreau, chief medical officer at Beverly Hospital near Boston and an expert in aviation medicine. “I do think it could be safer.”
Excerpt from WSJ
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