Following the Kingdom of Jordan’s decision to suspend passenger flights last week, Royal Jordanian airlines is complying and limiting their operations to cargo flights only. The order came in to effect on 17 March as countries all around the world have been issuing similar travel restrictions.
Cargo operations only
Royal Jordanian is now only operating flights for air freight. The airline said in a recent press release that some of its Boeing 787 passenger aircraft will now be used to transport commercial freight.
“These aircraft will operate without passengers, meaning that the cost of operating this aircraft is to be paid by the carried shipments on board only” the airline says.
The airline goes on to say that prices for freight carried on its Airbus 310, the only Royal Jordanian freighter designated for this purpose, have not changed. However, there is one exception: Shipping prices to and from Doha needed to change due to unspecified reasons.
Royal Jordanian’s repatriation flight
On February 1st at Amman’s Queen Alia Airport, Royal Jordanian airlines conducted a complete sterilization and disinfection of its Boeing 787 aircraft. The aircraft returned from Wuhan after being sent to the Chinese city of Wuhan to evacuate Jordanians, Palestinians and Arabs residing there. Upon arrival and offloading of passengers, the aircraft underwent a complete sterilization protocol.
This is what the airline had to say about its method:
“Royal Jordanian has confidence in the safety of the sterilization procedure, which followed a scientifically proven methodology, making use of high-quality products. The electrostatic innovative sterilization protocol was used, following the best practices.”
The airline goes on to say that the sterilization and disinfection process took a total of two hours to complete three phases. This complies with international standards set by civil aviation authorities and Boeing’s protocol. The airline says the process helps kill 100% of bacteria, virus and fungi.
Since we reported on the airline’s repatriation flight sterilization, the process has become fairly common with airlines all over the world as the virus continues to spread. We have subsequently seen airlines send out emails and press releases reassuring their passengers that aircraft were being properly sanitized. Emirates even released a video showing its comprehensive cleaning procedures with its Airbus A380.
Unfortunately, the aviation industry is past the stage of sanitizing and disinfecting aircraft. With travel restrictions being put up in countries all over the world, commercial passenger operations have mostly come to a halt. Royal Jordanian is no exception.
Recently we also saw two Middle Eastern giants finally announce cuts to their operations. We had Qatar Airways announce a 75% reduction in passenger services and Emirates release an extensive list of its capacity cuts.