Ryanair flights are the go-to option for many Britons keen for cheap holidays. But how safe is it to fly at this time amid coronavirus? Today Ryanair Chief Executive Michael O’Leary revealed the safety measures onboard the flights – as he slammed the UK’s current air bridge proposals for their ineffectiveness.
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O’Leary explained that while social distancing isn’t possible onboard aircraft, everyone will wear face masks which will help limit the spread of the virus.
“Most likely [you’ll be sitting next to someone who’s not from your own family],” he told BBC viewers this morning.
“But you will be wearing face masks, you’ll be sitting on seats and touching aircraft services that have been deep cleaned and disinfected overnight.
“And, as the WHO and the European Centre for Disease Control have confirmed, you will be travelling in perfect safety.”
The Ryanair boss went on to critics those calling for social distancing on planes.
“You can’t be [one metre apart] on planes, not on a train or in the airport either, it’s a nonsense idea so that’s why we require mandatory face masks.
“[Passengers’] safety is guaranteed and overseen by both the WHO and the European Centre of Disease Control.
“People wearing face masks and not just all the passengers wearing face masks but also all our crews are wearing face masks eliminates the risk of a spread of COVID-19 by upwards of 90 percent.”
During an appearance on ITV’s Good Morning Britain this morning, O’Leary defended any risks flying may have at this time.
“Flying isn’t risk-free, driving your car isn’t risk-free, the London Underground isn’t risk-free,” he said.
“We need to get back to some degree of normality.
“We can’t live our lives, sitting isolated at home.”
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However, O’Leary slammed the air bridges the government is set to implement in order to eradicate the need to quarantine.
“The air bridges in the UK they’re talking about is a nonsense idea,” he told BBC.
“The idea that you would be okay fly to Spain, but not Portugal and yet people can travel openly across the border between Spain and Portugal is a nonsense.”
O’Leary also warned it could take years before the industry recovers from the impact of coronavirus.
“The industry across Europe is going through the worst downturn it has ever faced,” he said.
“And to put it in some context, we all remember the terrorist attacks in New York and 9/11, the airlines were grounded for four days after 9/11 and we recovered within about a year or two.
“This COVID-19 pandemic we’ve been grounded for almost four months – it is, without doubt, the worst, deepest downturn the airline and the tourism industry has ever faced.
“That’s why it’s vital that we get people moving again during July and August, and get the tourism industry of Britain welcoming visitors from Europe.”
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