How Clean Are Airplanes During The Pandemic
Over the last 8 years I have flown at lest 50 times a every year. Since the pandemic I hadn't flown until two weeks ago and I was definitely worried about the potential virus left behind by other passengers. I was also under the impression that once the plane was airborne that the air in the plane was recycled and that we would all be breathing each others germs. According to the flight attendant on my flight two weeks ago that is not the case, the planes that Southwest flies all take in outside air that is then filtered for passengers to breathe. He also mentioned that all touch points were cleaned before every flight, well apparently that has changed...
"As our operations continue to increase, we are now optimizing our pre-departure cleaning processes and shifting some areas to be disinfected during our overnight cleaning process, when Southwest Teams spend six to seven hours per aircraft cleaning all interior surfaces," said Southwest in a statement.
No more sanitized seat belt buckles, tray tables, air vents, arm rests before every flight but the good news is that each plane undergoes an electrostatic spraying, at least once a month, that's designed to kill viruses on contact and form an "anti-microbial coating for 30 days," claims Southwest.
A major plus is that through at least Oct. 31 Southwest will keep middle seats open on every flight.