How to avoid the coronavirus on an airplane

Friday, March 6, 2020
How to fly safely during the COVID-19 outbreak
Planning to travel on an airplane during the pandemic? The tips and common misconceptions in the video above could help you and your family stay safe.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- If your family plans to fly, Dr. Michael Chang says there are some misconceptions you should know about the spread of illnesses, like the coronavirus. It's not actually the air circulating in the plane that can spread germs.

"In airplanes, it's mostly this contact droplet spread, so it's the people near you and the stuff that's on the surfaces," Dr. Chang said.

Eboni Harrell isn't planning to travel for spring break.

"I'm not going anywhere, not going anywhere, I am not going to go nowhere. I am going to stay here," she said

She won't be traveling, but she works at Bush Intercontinental Airport. She says she is worried about other people who will be traveling.

"I wear gloves, I wear masks, I have hand sanitizer, I have wipes. I have a lot of stuff, so I try to make myself as safe as possible," she said.

Here are the best ways to stay healthy on a plane:

  • Board the plane last. That means you have less time to potentially be exposed to someone who is sick.
  • Bring sanitizer wipes to wipe down your seat, arm rest and the tray table.
  • Use hand sanitizer after buckling your seat belt.
  • Opt for the middle or window seat.

"Aisle seats and the trays and the arm rests, those all get touched more by random people, so sitting closer to the seating in the middle or window seat actually may keep you from being exposed to as many walking by who may be sick," Dr. Chang said.

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