13 passengers on Scoot flight from S'pore to Tianjin, China, tested positive for Covid-19

The cabin crew and pilots of the flight will not operate any flights in the next 14 days, Scoot said.

Zhangxin Zheng | August 24, 2020, 01:23 AM

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A Scoot flight that arrived in Tianjin, China, from Singapore on the evening of Aug. 19, had 13 passengers on board with Covid-19, Scoot confirmed with Mothership.

13 passengers from Singapore tested positive in Tianjin, 11 were from construction industry

An article circulating on Chinese social media Weixin disclosed that among these 13 passengers onboard TR138, 11 were working in the construction industry while residing in Singapore.

They are males, mostly aged around 40 to 50 years old.

They were all asymptomatic with 36.5°C body temperature recorded upon arrival.

However, nucleic acid tests showed that they were Covid-19 positive.

As such, they were immediately isolated at local hospitals.

Mothership understands that workers are only allowed to return to their home country if they are confirmed to be cleared of Covid-19 by the Ministry of Manpower here.

That means they have either recovered from Covid-19 or tested negative during swab tests.

Currently, workers who are allowed to resume work in the construction, marine, and process sectors will have to undergo Rostered Routine Testing (RRT) every 14 days as precautionary measures.

The 14-day cycle is likely due to the incubation period of Covid-19, which is the time between exposure to the virus and onset of symptoms, which can last as long as 14 days.

If anyone is quarantined as a result of RRT, they will not be allowed to leave Singapore until they are cleared of Covid-19.

Precautions and stringent cleaning of Scoot aircraft in light of Covid-19

In response to Mothership's query, Scoot said that they were informed by the Chinese authorities about the 13 Covid-19 cases.

The aircraft has a total seating capacity of 375 and carried 223 passengers.

Scoot immediately informed the Ministry of Health to take necessary actions.

The cabin crew and pilots of the flight have been advised to closely monitor their health and will not operate any flights in the next 14 days, Scoot said.

Since the start of Covid-19, Scoot has also taken additional safety measures for all flights, Scoot added.

Some of the extensive safe distancing measures include assigned seating onboard, temperature checks before boarding and mandatory wearing of masks throughout the flight.

Passengers are also required to fill out a health declaration prior to boarding, including reporting any symptoms of a respiratory infection.

Scoot cabin crew are also required to wear the appropriate Personal Protection Equipment while on duty, which includes surgical gloves, a mask, and a face shield.

Refreshment packs are also pre-placed on the seats to reduce contact between cabin crew and passengers.

There is also more stringent cleaning of the aircraft, which includes surface wipe-downs, deep cleaning in common spaces, such as the toilets, as well as fogging of the aircraft to ensure all surfaces are disinfected thoroughly.

The aircraft that operated this flight has been thoroughly cleaned and disinfected per operating procedures, Scoot added.

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