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CDC Admission Implicates Air Force One
Aerosols Can Spread COVID, On Air Force One or Elsewhere, Despite HEPA Filters
The now outdated guideline - that maintaining a 6-foot separation provided adequate protection against the transmission of this highly contagious disease - has long been outdated by new research, and in any event was never realistic, says Banzhaf, based upon his expertise and expert testimony in dealing with particles of tobacco smoke which many used to claim likewise did not spread, and allegedly could not cause harm beyond a few feet from the smoker.
For example, 187 passengers and 6 crew on a TUI AG flight from Zante to Cardiff were quarantined after at least 16 cases of COVID-19 were confirmed after an August 25th flight.
A CDC study of two Korean flights showed that even asymptomatic passengers could and did spread the coronavirus to other passengers even though each passenger was given an N95 mask, and staff members followed strict infection-control procedures at the airport and in the air overseen by the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Also, Qingyan Chen, a professor of mechanical engineering at Purdue University, cited two other international flights: on the first a single passenger infected 14 people while flying from London to Hanoi. There was also transmission of the deadly virus on a second flight from Singapore to Hangzhou, even though all passengers were wearing face masks.
Experts have also pointed out that boarding and deplaning – when the plane's ventilation system isn't even running, and people are unable to stay distanced from one another – is one of the riskiest parts of the airline travel process, as is going through security and waiting in the departure lounge where ventilation may likewise be very poor.
So, "don't bet your life on airline HEPA hype," Professor Banzhaf warns.