Saudia airlines said on Wednesday that it has began using advanced ultraviolet-C (UVC) rays technology to sterilize its aircraft. “This addition is a further step in the comprehensive aircraft sterilization process before and after each flight,” the Kingdom’s national carrier said on its website. Saudi Airlines began using UVC ultraviolet rays to sterilize its aircraft seats, in cooperation with the Saudi Company for Ground Services, to provide all means of safety and prevention for its guests and employees. The new technology works by launching ultraviolet rays to sterilize cabin surfaces within ten minutes, in a fully medium-sized cabin. UVC radiation is a known disinfectant and has effectively been used to reduce the spread of bacteria for decades.
Several recent studies have shown that 99.9% of coronaviruses can be killed when exposed to UVC radiation. Saudia said the UVC device simultaneously sterilizes both sides of the cabin, and “this technology combines efficiency and speed of completion, which is a step in a series of sterilization operations that Saudi Arabia to secure the highest safety standards,” Saudi Press Agency reported.
Saudia said that it has been undergoing full inspections of all their aircraft since Jan. 26, which include “careful disinfection and thorough deep cleaning,” in addition to screening all frontline staff and cabin crew members prior to each flight. Saudi Arabia partially lifted restrictions on international flight operations last month, which were suspended in the wake of the pandemic on March 15.
International passenger flights have been allowed to operate with limited capacity for expatriates who have applied through a Ministry of Interior initiative that allows people in the country legally or illegally, visitors and tourism visa holders to return home. Domestic flights resumed at the end of May, with the General Authority of Civil Aviation opening 11 of the Kingdom’s 28 airports in a step toward restoring normality to everyday activities. The Kingdom will end all restrictions on air, land and sea transport after Jan. 1 next year.
Source: Arab News