COVID-19 Procedures Designed To Protect And Give Passengers Confidence In Traveling By Plane
The purpose is to review the airline’s current policy and to offer suggestions and enhancements in the future.
“We look forward to working with Stanford Medicine as we continue utilizing a science-based approach to develop and bolster our operational policies and practices during the ongoing pandemic,” said Gary Kelly, Southwest’s Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer. ”
This collaboration adds to our advisory partners and brings a team of physician-scientists into our ongoing discussions and will infuse the latest medical research and public health recommendations into our mission of supporting the well-being of our Customers and Employees.”
Southwest Airlines Current COVID-19 Airport & Airplane Policies & Procedures
Here is what Southwest Airlines are currently doing at the airport prior to boarding as well as on its planes. As is the case with all airlines, masks are required at all times when in the airport and on the plane.
At the Airports:
Airport Cleaning: Southwest is cleaning ticket counters, gates, kiosks, and baggage claim areas multiple times a day. Additionally, the airline is utilizing electrostatic sprayers to apply a disinfectant to airport areas at least once per week.
Physical Distancing in Airports: Southwest is boarding in smaller groups of 10 to allow for distancing and queuing only on one side of boarding poles in the gate areas. Additionally, new airport signage and floor markers highlight and encourage proper distances throughout the boarding areas. Southwest also has installed Plexiglas® at ticketing and gate counters and baggage service offices to help everyone keep their distance during in-person transactions and interactions between Employees and Customers.
Hand Hygiene: Hand sanitizer is available at check-in kiosks, ticket counters, and gates.
Onboard Southwest Aircraft:
HEPA Filters: Every aircraft is equipped with a sophisticated air distribution system that introduces fresh, outdoor air and HEPA-filtered air into the cabin while inflight, resulting in an exchange of cabin air every two to three minutes. Southwest uses HEPA filters onboard that remove 99.97% of airborne particles*—similar to the technology found in hospitals (*measuring 0.3 micrometers or greater in diameter passing through the filter).
Middle Seats Open: Southwest has committed to keeping the equivalent of all middle seats open through Nov. 30 to allow room for physical distancing onboard every flight.
Enhanced Overnight Aircraft Cleaning: Southwest deep cleans each plane from nose to tail for nearly six to seven labor hours every night, including all high-touch surfaces such as seat belt buckles, tray tables, air vents, arm rests, galleys, and lavatories.
Electrostatic Aircraft Spraying: Both an electrostatic disinfectant and an anti-microbial spray are applied on every surface of the aircraft, killing viruses on contact and, then, forming an anti-microbial coating, or shield, for 30 days.
Cleaning Before Every Flight: Sani-Cide EX3, a broad-spectrum disinfectant, is used to clean onboard lavatories and tray tables before every flight. Additionally, sanitizing wipes are available for Customers onboard, upon request.