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The European Union will now not require masks to be worn at airports and on planes beginning subsequent week amid the easing of coronavirus restrictions throughout the bloc, authorities mentioned Wednesday.
The European Union Aviation Security Company mentioned it hoped the joint determination, made with the European Centre for Illness Prevention and Management, would mark “a big step forward in the normalization of air travel” for passengers and crews.
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The brand new guideline “takes account of the latest developments in the pandemic, in particular the levels of vaccination and naturally acquired immunity, and the accompanying lifting of restrictions in a growing number of European countries,” the 2 companies mentioned in a joint assertion.
“Passengers should however behave responsibly and respect the choices of others around them,” EASA Govt Director Patrick Ky mentioned. “And a passenger who is coughing and sneezing should strongly consider wearing a face mask, for the reassurance of those seated nearby.”
Whereas the brand new suggestions take impact on Might 16, guidelines for masks should still differ by airline past that date in the event that they fly to or from locations the place the principles are completely different.
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European Centre for Illness Prevention and Management director Andrea Ammon mentioned washing palms and social distancing ought to nonetheless be practiced, however airport operators are suggested to not impose distancing necessities if these are more likely to result in a bottleneck.
The companies additionally really useful that airways maintain programs for accumulating passenger locator info on standby in case they’re wanted in future, for instance if a brand new harmful variant emerges.