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MoCA releases new air travel SOP: Aarogya Setu mandatory, no cabin baggage, people over 80 yrs not allowed

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By Ashoke Raj

New Delhi | May 12, 2020 7:11:53 PM IST
The Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) has issued a draft of the standard operating procedure (SOP) to all aviation stakeholders, including airlines and airport operators before the resumption of domestic commercial flight operations.

The ministry has asked airlines and airport operators to respond on the SOP.

People over the age of 80 will not be permitted to travel in the first phase of flight commencement. No cabin baggage will be allowed at the initial stage and only one piece of checked-in baggage (less than 20 kg) will be permitted.

"MoCA issues SOP to all aviation stakeholders including airlines and airport operators before flight resumption. People above 80 years of age to be restricted from travel in Phase 1 of flight resumption. No cabin baggage in the initial phase, checked-in baggage to be only one piece (less than 20 kg)," MoCA SOP stated.

"Passengers and employees showing any symptoms and the Aarogya Setu app not showing 'Green' are not allowed to enter the airport terminal building," it said.

Airlines have flagged the issue on the use of Aarogya Setu app. "Airlines have learnt that many passengers are not carrying smartphones. Then how will we deal with those passengers," an airline official told ANI.

Apart from this, the Civil Aviation Ministry has emphasised on safety and security. Security personnel will practice the 'minimum touch' concept to avoid any infection.

"Social distance marking, tensor barriers (queue managers) and separate seating in the area to avoid congestion and queuing on entry, and availability of a sufficient number of personal protective equipment (PPE) on duty to ensure safety. The availability of hand sanitiser dispensers should be ensured. Safety checks taxis authorised to hybridise trays in the cabin baggage screening area and expect slow procedures and therefore avoid last-minute delay to reach the airport," SOP said.

Passengers should know in advance about ticket booking and check-in at the airport.

"Web check-in only, print boarding pass and check-in baggage ticket if required. Passengers before entering the terminal to wear protective gear such as masks, gloves, shoe covers, PPE etc. as per prevailing requirements. Passengers to report at the airport two hours before departure," it said.

The government has taken the final decision on flight restoration. Flight operations were suspended in India except for relief/cargo and evacuation flights from March 25 due to COVID-19 outbreak. (ANI)

 
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