The risk of catching COVID-19 infection on a plane is very LOW; Read what a recent study suggests!

According to the US Department of Defense study, travelers don’t need to worry about catching coronavirus infection on aircraft.

The US DOD study supports earlier research showing the ventilation systems on aircraft filter the air efficiently and take out particles that could transmit viruses.

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A dummy wearing a surgical mask simulated a coughing passenger infected with a respiratory virus.

The team used fluorescent aerosol tracers to see where particles emitted from the coughing passenger went. They were sucked quickly into the ventilation system, the team concluded and were unlikely to contaminate nearby surfaces or blow into the breathing zones of people seated nearby.

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As per the result, “99.99% of the particles left the interior of the aircraft within six minutes. It indicates that being on board an aircraft is the safest indoor public space because of the unique configuration inside an aircraft that includes aggressive ventilation, lots of airflow.” 

Contamination of surfaces via nonaerosol routes is more likely in lavatories and other common areas and is not tested here. These alternative routes of exposure are more challenging to predict because of uncertainty in human behaviour.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes that “most viruses and other germs do not spread easily on flights because of how air circulates and is filtered on airplanes, adding to that the lack of social distancing on crowded flights that may require passengers to sit within six feet of others for long periods may increase your risk of getting Covid-19.”

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