The Turks and Caicos Islands Airports Authority (TCIAA) on Friday announced its plans to maintain the safety, health and well-being of passengers and stakeholders when the airports are reopened.
Together with the local Health Ministry, new protocols have been instituted to disinfect common areas at the airport and encourage users to adopt proper hand hygiene.
The following is a list of new protocols to be observed at the airports:
- All persons are required to wear face masks in order to receive services at the airport.
- All staff members must be equipped with masks and shields to safely interact with passengers.
- The Ministry of Health will continue to have a presence at the facility to monitor operations as well as monitor arriving passengers.
- New positioning has been set out for Immigration Booths in addition to guard shields.
- New hand sanitizer stations have been added to the facility in order to better facilitate hand hygiene.
- All stakeholders will be reminded to wash their hands for at least 20 seconds several times a day (every 30-45 minutes) with announcements being made on the loud speaker.
- Airport staff have increased cleaning frequencies at rest rooms and hot spots.
- Airlines are encouraged to practice social distancing in flight.
- Social distancing reminders and signs will be erected throughout the facility.
- Six Feet (6 ft) floor dots will be visible inside and outside of the Terminal to maintain social distancing requirements.
- Seating decals will be placed throughout the Departure Lounges to block out seats that do not fit social distancing standards.
- All retailers and airlines have been encouraged to institute proper disinfecting protocols for their immediate areas and aircrafts.
- Special efforts will be made to stagger flights to minimize clusters on arrival and departures.
- Security Officers will be cleaning bins after each use and sanitizing persons upon entry into security areas.
- Security Officers will insist that passengers remove all items from their pockets and body in order to expedite movement through the walk-through metal detector.
- Passengers will be allowed to carry up to 12 oz/ 350ml of alcohol-based sanitizer through Security Check Points.
- Travelers should arrive to the airport earlier than usual to navigate through the new measures.
- Passengers that have been feeling ill are asked to avoid travel and alert their health care professional.
CEO of the TCIAA, John Smith, in a press statement said, “we appreciate all efforts being made by the Government, Health officials and all of our partners that are doing their best to keep travel safe for everyone. These measures have been instituted in order to curb the spread of COVID-19.”
The new protocols are being adopted to reduce the risk of coronavirus infection to travelers and employees when airport operations resume.
Air travel all around the world has been disrupted by the dreaded coronavirus pandemic which saw the closure of airports and grounding of vast numbers of aircraft.
The suspension of flight operations in Turks and Caicos is set to expire on June 1, 2020 at 1000 GMT (6 a.m. local time).