On Monday, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) announced that it has exempted flight crews from Breath Analyzer (BA) tests for 15 days at Kerala's Calicut, Kannur, Trivandrum and Cochin airports amidst the contagious coronavirus outbreak. Breath Analyser tests are mandatory tests for all flight crews to check for the presence of alcohol in the system. Apart from the pilots and cabin crew, even the airside staff, ground equipment operators, ground handling personnel and flight dispatchers are subjected to the test.
However, given the global outbreak of the Novel Coronavirus which has claimed over 900 lives, the DGCA has decided that it would exempt the crew from Breath Analyzer tests since the disease is highly contagious and could spread through oral transmissions such as sneezing or coughing.
DGCA has exempted flight crews from Breath Analyser tests for 15 days at Kerala's Calicut, Kannur, Trivandrum and Cochin airports. Crew operating flights out of these airports need to mandatorily undergo post-flight BA at the next immediate station. #Coronavius pic.twitter.com/kjjHZF4ahf— ANI (@ANI) February 10, 2020
Amid the scare of the novel Coronavirus, the Ministry of Health on Sunday had taken to Twitter and issued an update on the status of virus in India. According to the Ministry, a total of 9452 persons are currently under community surveillance in India. The screening of passengers is now on at all 21 airports, International Seaports and border crossings. 1818 flights and 1,97,192 passengers have been screened so far. Several countries have banned arrivals from China while major airlines have suspended flights to the country.
Previously the DGCA had announced that foreigners who visited China on after January 15, will not be allowed to enter India. A notice conveying the news was issued by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Saturday, which read, "foreigners who have been to China on or after January 15, 2020, are not allowed to enter India from any air, land or seaport including India-Nepal, Indo-Bhutan, Indo-Bangladesh or Indo-Myanmar land borders."