Emblem of CAAC at Beijing. Photo: David290 from Wikimedia Commons.

MIAMI – The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) yesterday announced that it will take fuse measures against several airlines. The flight suspension will affect individual flights, not airlines.

The CAAC explained that authorities found several cases of COVID-19 on flights. The suspension will start from the November 2nd. Airlines can operate these flights until November 2nd, unless already suspended.

China Southern Airlines, one of the involved airlines. Photo: James Field

The Involved Airlines

The authorities found eight cases on Iranian Mahan Airlines’ (W5) flight from Tehran (IKA) to Guangzhou (CAN) on October 12. At the time, the CAAC ordered a one-week suspension.

The Authority has also suspended Neos Airlines’ (NE) 946 flight for one week and cancelled flight 976. The decision follows six positive cases on the Milan (MXP) – Nanjing (NKG) flight.

On October 14, authorities found 10 cases on Turkish Airlines’ (TK) Istanbul (IST) – CAN flight. This resulted in a four-week suspension of TK72.

Turkish Airlines’ B787-9. Photo: Roberto Leiro

More COVID-19 Cases

Further on, CAAC will suspend China Southern Airlines’ (CZ) flight 348 for five weeks. On October 14, five passengers tested positive on the flight from Paris (CDG) to CAN.

The Administration has also suspended that Saudia’s (SV) Riyadh (RUH) to CAN flight for four weeks. On October 15th, officials found 10 positive cases on the flight. Together with CZ, this flight has already been suspended for two weeks in October.

Lastly, CAAC has ordered LOT Polish Airlines’ (LO) Warsaw (WAW)-Tianjin (TSN) to stop for four weeks. The airline operated the first TSN flight in September. On October 15, ten passengers tested positive from this flight.

LOT Polish Airlines’ Boeing 787-9 rocking out of Budapest Airport. Photo credit: Miklós Budai – @aviationmike.hu

Strict Measures to Control the Pandemic

The Chinese authorities have used strict measures to control the pandemic. To control the spread, the Government closed down or tested whole cities. At the beggining of the pandemic, they closed down the whole Wuhan region.

Since reopening, the authorities imposed new rules. Passengers must have a negative COVID test on arrival. In the early period of COVID-19, CAAC only allowed one flight per week from destinations.

Yesterday, China imposed travel restrictions in the Xinjiang region. The authorities suspended flights and trains to Kashgar (KHG) for a few hours to test the entire population.

Featured iamge source: David290 from Wikimedia Commons.