What are the chances of someone contracting Covid-19 on a flight? Here are the results of a new study conducted by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
What are the chances of getting a corona infection during a flight? A study by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology provided an estimate of the number of people traveling on US domestic flights between June 2020 and February 2021. The study assessed the potential for corona virus spread in flight.
- In December 2020 and January 2021, at the height of the epidemic, more than one in 1,000 took a two-hour flight.
- In the summer of 2020, when the epidemic was less severe, around one in 6,000 people were two hours away.
- One in 2,000 from June 2020 to February 2021
MIT acknowledges that the current conditions differ from the study. US domestic travelers no longer require masks; During the study period, airlines generally did not occupy middle seats, which they no longer do; The new corona variant is more contagious than the virus during the study period.
Although these factors may increase the current risk, most people have received corona vaccines since February 2021, which should help reduce the risk today, the statement said.
“Nevertheless, the study provides a general assessment of air travel safety related to the spread of corona and a methodology that can be used for future studies,” he said.
The researchers combined public health statistics on the spread of the coronavirus, data from peer studies on the mechanisms of virus spread, data on the spread of viruses on airlines in general – data on the spread of the virus on international airlines – and some available industry data on seat occupancy rates on US domestic jets. They then assessed the risks of contagion on US domestic flights through detailed modeling.
The researchers used a two-hour flight for their estimates because that’s the average length of a domestic flight in the United States. The researchers used Boeing 737 and Airbus A320 aircraft systems with a single aisle, three seats abreast and a typical capacity of around 175 passengers.
Most of these aircraft are equipped with high performance HEPA air purification systems that help reduce the risk of airborne disease transmission.
An article titled “Risk of Covid-19 Infection on US National Airlines” appeared this month in the journal Health Care Management Science.