Today, the Minister of Transport Tālis Linkaits visited Riga International Airport to inspect the measures developed by the Airport to adapt its infrastructure and procedures to work in the conditions of the Covid-19 pandemic. “During the virus pandemic, it is important to provide passengers, employees and Airport partners with maximum protection and confidence that the Airport has carefully considered all the necessary precautions,” the Minister emphasized.
At the same time, the Airport must maintain a high level of service and implement all existing aviation security procedures and act as a centre for cooperation and communication between companies, employees and customers working at the Airport in accordance with common health safety guidelines.
“During the visit, I was convinced that the set of measures offered by the Airport will ensure epidemiologically safe passenger service processes and a constant level of customer service at the Airport at the time when international passenger air traffic is gradually resumed,” said Tālis Linkaits after the meeting.
When developing and implementing the programme for safe flights in the conditions of the Covid-19 pandemic, the working group of Riga Airport was guided by the recommendations of the Latvian and world health institutions, as well as recommendations of international aviation organizations for the aviation industry.
The Minister of Transport got acquainted with the programme developed by the Airport management #ForbidTheVirusFromTravelling, which provides for a set of measures for the safety of Airport employees and customers during the Covid-19 pandemic. This includes the provision of personal protective equipment to employees in accordance with the specifics of the work, as well as increased disinfection of premises, surfaces and workplaces, and the availability of disinfectants to passengers.
The Airport will inform passengers by continuing to place distancing signs on the floor and seats, reminding of the precautions on monitors, in printed materials and the voice announcement system. Aircraft at the exits and boarding sectors will also be planned in such a way as to minimize the use of buses and avoid crowding.
With the resumption of scheduled passenger flights, the Airport proposes a mandatory requirement to use a face mask or other mouth and nose shield when in the Airport terminal. Passengers arriving at the Airport without a mask will have an opportunity to purchase it before entering the terminal. The Airport also considers that, working in cooperation with the health authorities, arriving passengers should still be given an opportunity to undergo a medical examination.
Evaluating the international practice of measuring the body temperature of departing and arriving passengers and taking into account that several airlines are also interested in this service, the Airport in cooperation with the national airline airBaltic is ready to provide thermal cameras and staff to measure the body temperature of both departing and arriving passengers.
“The only thing that fully controls all the precautions is the virus itself. The control of the virus depends on the actions of every Airport employee and passenger. Therefore, all the precautionary measures implemented at the Airport will be effective only if travellers cooperate with the Airport services and observe the set restrictions responsibly,” said the Minister of Transport.