New Delhi: Cabin crew members of Indian airlines will have personal protective equipment (PPE) like face shields, gowns and masks as part of their attire on commercial passenger flights when they resume operations, industry sources said.
India is under lockdown since March 25 to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, and all scheduled commercial passenger flights remain suspended.
Airlines such as IndiGo, Air India, Vistara and AirAsia India have decided to go with the new attire in order to ensure safety of cabin crew members as they are in close proximity to passengers during flights, the sources said.
This would be similar to the attire unveiled by Philippines AirAsia for its cabin crew on April 27. The attire comprise a red-coloured full body suit consisting of a face shield and a face mask.
"While AirAsia India will have face shields, masks, gowns, aprons and gloves as a part of their PPE attire for cabin crew members, Vistara would have a lap gown, face mask and face shield as the new dress code," a source said.
Once commercial flights resume, each IndiGo's crew member will have to wear a surgical mask, gloves, face shields along with a gown or a body suit, the sources said.
Air India, which is currently conducting repatriation flights under the Vande Bharat Mission to bring stranded Indians home from abroad, will have its crew members wear a body suit, gloves, face shield and face mask even in scheduled commercial passenger flights, whenever they restart, the sources said.
The virus has infected more than 78,000 persons and killed more than 2,500 persons in India till now. Earlier this month, the Civil Aviation Ministry had asked Indian airlines and airports to give their comments on a draft Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) regarding the post-lockdown scheduled commercial flight operations.
On May 12, the ministry said on Twitter that it has received comments from the stakeholders and is yet to issue the final SOP.