Delta, United, And American Airlines Suspend More Flights To Coronavirus Impact Zones - Forbes

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  • 6 March 2020

An American Airlines Airbus A320-200 seen at Newark Liberty...
SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Now that the Center for Disease Control has issued a non-essential travel risk warning to South Korea and Italy, the major carriers are increasing flight suspensions to all of the top coronavirus impact zones.

Delta Airlines said on Monday that it would ground all flights to Milan and has delayed its Venice service launch. Their last flight to Milan left JFK International in New York City today and will resume service on May 1. Their final inbound flight from Milan to JFK is scheduled for tomorrow.

Delta was also the first to suspend flights to Seoul from its slot at the Minneapolis/St. Paul airport last week following CDC raising the travel risk level from a Level 2 risk to a Level 3 risk, putting it on par with China and Iran.

American Airlines also said that due to a fall-off in demand from passengers, they are suspending all service to Milan from Miami and New York, with current plans to resume flights on April 25. The ban goes into effect immediately.

United Airlines is also suspending some service to Tokyo and Osaka, Japan; Singapore and Seoul. Italy is on waivers. They did not yet respond to whether their Italian flights would be suspended, but if a critical number of passengers opt for the waiver policy to avoid the unknown, then those flights will be canceled. United operates two Italy-bound flights, one to Rome and one to Milan, both leaving from Newark International Airport.

Italy is now home to the biggest outbreak of the coronavirus Covid-19 in Europe. It also has the third largest number of deaths, following Iran and China.

During a public health forum to discuss Covid-19 at the Harvard School of Public Health in Cambridge on Monday, Marc Lipsitch, director of Harvard’s Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics, said it’s hard to know where to restrict travel as the disease has now spread far beyond the epicenter of Hubei province, China.

“Limiting traveling makes a lot of sense because it’s part of the response to try and slow this virus down,” he says, adding that he currently stopped his own daughter from traveling to a place with no cases at all.

Paul Biddinger, director of Harvard’s Emergency Preparedness Research, Evaluation and Practice program says the only way to reduce fear is to keep telling people how to protect themselves with simple hygiene such as washing hands, avoiding large gatherings, and staying home when sick.

“Most Covid cases are mild,” he says.

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An American Airlines Airbus A320-200 seen at Newark Liberty...

You're grounded. Major carriers restricting flights left and right. Even Tokyo and Singapore not ... [+] left unscathed. (Photo by Alex Tai/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Now that the Center for Disease Control has issued a non-essential travel risk warning to South Korea and Italy, the major carriers are increasing flight suspensions to all of the top coronavirus impact zones.

Delta Airlines said on Monday that it would ground all flights to Milan and has delayed its Venice service launch. Their last flight to Milan left JFK International in New York City today and will resume service on May 1. Their final inbound flight from Milan to JFK is scheduled for tomorrow.

Delta was also the first to suspend flights to Seoul from its slot at the Minneapolis/St. Paul airport last week following CDC raising the travel risk level from a Level 2 risk to a Level 3 risk, putting it on par with China and Iran.

American Airlines also said that due to a fall-off in demand from passengers, they are suspending all service to Milan from Miami and New York, with current plans to resume flights on April 25. The ban goes into effect immediately.

United Airlines is also suspending some service to Tokyo and Osaka, Japan; Singapore and Seoul. Italy is on waivers. They did not yet respond to whether their Italian flights would be suspended, but if a critical number of passengers opt for the waiver policy to avoid the unknown, then those flights will be canceled. United operates two Italy-bound flights, one to Rome and one to Milan, both leaving from Newark International Airport.

Italy Virus Outbreak

Medical staff wearing protective suits carry the coffin containing the body of Assunta Pastore, 87, ... [+] after she died at the Garden Hotel in Laigueglia, northern Italy, from the new coronavirus. (AP Photo)

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Italy is now home to the biggest outbreak of the coronavirus Covid-19 in Europe. It also has the third largest number of deaths, following Iran and China.

During a public health forum to discuss Covid-19 at the Harvard School of Public Health in Cambridge on Monday, Marc Lipsitch, director of Harvard’s Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics, said it’s hard to know where to restrict travel as the disease has now spread far beyond the epicenter of Hubei province, China.

“Limiting traveling makes a lot of sense because it’s part of the response to try and slow this virus down,” he says, adding that he currently stopped his own daughter from traveling to a place with no cases at all.

Paul Biddinger, director of Harvard’s Emergency Preparedness Research, Evaluation and Practice program says the only way to reduce fear is to keep telling people how to protect themselves with simple hygiene such as washing hands, avoiding large gatherings, and staying home when sick.

“Most Covid cases are mild,” he says.


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