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Southwest should follow what airlines are doing for requiring passengers to wear masks on board

New Arrival

Why is Southwest Airlines not following other airlines in requiring passengers to wear masks on board with the COVID19?  CNN today published an article about what other airlines are doing:

 https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/airlines-masks-middle-seats-beverage-service/index.html   

 

Passengers are reluctant to fly again knowing that not everyone is subscribing to the CDC's recommendation for social distancing.   

 

I'm not only concerned for the passengers but for the flight crew as there have been an uptick in deaths in air crew.  

 https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2020-04-20/coronavirus-deaths-airline-industry-airplanes-fl...

 

https://abc7news.com/travel/hundreds-of-southwest-airlines-workers-have-covid-19/6086403/

17 REPLIES 17
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Re: Southwest should follow what airlines are doing for requiring passengers to wear masks on board

Active Member

This would be a question poised for their Executive Office in Dallas. If you google it you’ll find the phone number.

 

My guess is they believe that the flights aren’t full or even half full yet, along with that they’re heavily sanitizing each plane between flights. Which now there’s huge gaps between flights.

 

Then there’s the issue of what to do if someone takes it off mid flight or takes it off for a minute because it hurts them. Do they (flight attendants) use their Federal Authority to issue an order that they need to keep it on? In which case failure to comply is a federal misdemeanor, not just a fine. Maybe they don’t trust their flight crews as much as Delta to exercise this extent of authority as it could cause negative national publicity.

 

There’s a lot of variables, a big one being how full flights are. From what I’m seeing a majority of flights are half full, or less.

 

But as I said call SW EO and you’ll get a more detailed answer maybe it’ll be “we plan to implement it in the coming weeks”.

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Re: Southwest should follow what airlines are doing for requiring passengers to wear masks on board

New Arrival

What a nightmare for airlines with passengers becoming know it alls. If people are that freaked out. Stay home. This is not China where people are told to wear a mask. A mask does not guarantee COVID 19 is not in the game. If you are at risk stay home. 

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Re: Southwest should follow what airlines are doing for requiring passengers to wear masks on board

Top Contributor

@dhughes wrote:

What a nightmare for airlines with passengers becoming know it alls. If people are that freaked out. Stay home. This is not China where people are told to wear a mask. A mask does not guarantee COVID 19 is not in the game. If you are at risk stay home. 


 

With the great majority of the flying public concerned about COVID-19, I don't think any airline will take your advice and just tell them to "stay home." Masks reduce exposure, and as long as the virus is around, the recommendation for those wishing to limit their exposure, and more importantly their exposure to others, will remain. 

 

This may not be China, but this is a country where airlines can and do dictate passenger behavior onboard. Wearing a mask may very well become a requirement at some point.

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Re: Southwest should follow what airlines are doing for requiring passengers to wear masks on board

New Arrival

chgoflyer - The guy you responded to is exactly who I do not want to fly with. I completely agree with you and I think the ridiculous "stay home then if you're scared" attitude is juvenile at best with a world pandemic on. As an A-lister, if Southwest does not follow other responsible airlines like United and American, both of which hand out masks (and even sanitizing wipes) as you enter the aircraft, I will be switching carriers.

 

As someone who is in the business of manufacturing disinfectants and training healthcare facilities on using proper disinfecting techniques, I am well versed on the fact that merely "sanitizing" an aircraft will not stop airborne droplets from being spread from one unmasked mouth to another, in real time, aboard an aircraft. It is being ignorant of the well established scientific facts to think otherwise. 

 

While I prefer Southwest for all business travel, I will give my business to an airline that follows the science-based basic safety measures needed to protect against COVID-19. It is well known that the virus is primarily spread through airborne, person to person transmission, and not merely by germs on tray tables. I hope that Southwest will put science ahead of personal beliefs where public safety is concerned.

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Re: Southwest should follow what airlines are doing for requiring passengers to wear masks on board

New Arrival

I have impression SWA is equivocating on requiring all passengers to wear masks. No equivocating on my part, a loyal SWA customer: all passengers until further notice should be required to wear masks; if the former is not made SWA policy I will find another carrier that does and/or I will postpone my travel plans or just wait this virus out. I can wait for the next long distance vacation moment, and I am finding teleconferencing a pretty decent substitute for my formerly mandatory in person business meetings. Health is my top priority and health is the fastest route to economic recovery. I hope SWA sees it there same way, and thank you SWA for all your good works over the decades. You are a national treasure.

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Re: Southwest should follow what airlines are doing for requiring passengers to wear masks on board

New Arrival

Outside of your lack of altruism, if passengers are not confident their safety is cared for, they will not fly and airlines will suffer economically. Additionally, we should all care about the health and safety of our flight personnel.

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Re: Southwest should follow what airlines are doing for requiring passengers to wear masks on board

Top Contributor

@Matt4202 wrote:

 

My guess is they believe that the flights aren’t full or even half full yet, along with that they’re heavily sanitizing each plane between flights. Which now there’s huge gaps between flights.

Even with the enhanced procedures and extra time between flights, planes are only disenfected nightly, not in between flights. 

 

I suspect masks will eventually be required onboard domestic flights. If not as an FAA rule, as a best practice adopted by carriers who respect current health & safety recommendations.

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Re: Southwest should follow what airlines are doing for requiring passengers to wear masks on board

New Arrival

Jet Blue is requiring masks in the terminal, including check in and the waiting area, as well as on the flights themselves. Why isn’t Southwest requiring the same? It’s scaring people away!

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Re: Southwest should follow what airlines are doing for requiring passengers to wear masks on board

New Arrival

I am hoping that SWA requires Masks/face coverings soon. If not I’ll have to choose JetBlue instead. I’d much rather continue flying SWA. Please require Masks!  Sincerely Pat