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Air travel: Despite Covid’s warnings, more than 1 million people passed through U.S. airports on Friday

The Transportation Security Administration checked a little more than 1 million people at U.S. airports. Although this is still only 40% of the volume projected on the Friday before Thanksgiving a year ago, it is only the second time since mid-March that 1 million people have been screened in a single day. It was the first time on October 18.

That's why health experts say gathering in groups on holidays is a bad idea during a pandemic.

The influx of passengers comes on the day that Johns Hopkins University announced a record 195,542 new Covid-19 cases in the United States, confirmed. And that comes a day after the CDC issued its Thanksgiving travel warning.

United Airlines (UAL) on Thursday said it had noticed some increase in canceled flights and dropouts with the growing number of Covid cases. Southwest (LUV) and american airlines (AAL) also reported a decline in bookings, although they have yet to report an increase in canceled bookings.

However, US airlines are preparing for their busiest week since the pandemic began. American Airlines said it would increase its schedule by about 15% during Thanksgiving week compared to the rest of November, from an average of 3,500 daily flights to more than 4,000 flights.

Traveling at Denver International Airport on Friday.  More than 1 million people were checked by the TSA at U.S. airports on Friday, despite warnings urging people not to travel due to the growing Covid-19 cases.
Airlines insist that the cleaning procedures used between flights, the exchange of clean cabin air during flights and the hospital quality air filters now used in aircraft ensure safe flying even during a pandemic outbreak. Airlines are also urging passengers to wear masks.
The CDC’s concern is not about the spread of the disease during the flight, but rather whether large family gatherings during the holiday will spread the disease, especially in hospitals in many parts of the country that already have treatment capacity. patients with Covid.

The aviation industry neither encourages nor discourages vacation travel, the industry’s trade group leader said on Thursday.

“Do we want to see them travel? Yes, but only if it’s safe for them,” said Nick Calio, airline’s chief executive for America. “This includes different factors for each individual passenger.”

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