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11,000 may have been exposed to COVID-19 in aircraft

Thousands of people may have been exposed to COVID-19 on planes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Agency officials estimate that nearly 11,000 people may have been exposed to one of 1,600 known cases of people flying while infected with the virus, although they have not been able to confirm a single case of viral transmission on a U.S. plane.

“The lack of cases identified or reported is not evidence that there have been no cases,” CDC spokeswoman Caitlin Shockie told the Washington Post, which first released the statistics.

“The CDC is not in a position to determine definitively that the potential cases were (or not) related to exposure in the air cabin or by air travel, given the numerous potential exposure opportunities associated with the whole trip and the widespread spread of the virus worldwide scale, ”Shockey said.

Studies published in the journal CDC also found evidence that COVID-1

9 may have spread to aircraft in other countries.

The latest report, released on Friday, details a Vietnam Airlines passenger who may have spread the virus to 14 passengers on a March 1 flight from London to Hanoi. There are 217 people in the field, the researchers said.

American airlines usually require all passengers to wear masks while on board.

The CDC’s own manual says viruses do not spread so easily in flight “because of the air circulating and filtering in airplanes”, but warns “There may be a risk of getting COVID-19 in crowded flights if there are other people on board. passengers with COVID-19. “

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