Thursday, October 7, 2010

Travel News and Alerts: Airplane Air Ruled Safe

Jet taxiing out for takeoff, McCarran Airport, Las Vegas, Nevada (photo by Luis Bastardo)

Finally, some good travel news: when boarding a plane, you can put away your surgical mask and, as the flight attendants say, just sit back, relax and enjoy your flight. Turns out that airplane air isn't as hazardous to the health as was once thought. The New York Times reports this week that airplane air is no riskier than air in any other enclosed space, such as theaters, offices or on public transportation, according to the National Research Council’s Transportation Research Board. According to the report, “There is always an increased risk of infection whenever you enter a confined space, but an aircraft cabin is no worse an environment than the office you sit in every day,” said Dr. Mark Gendreau, an emergency and aviation medicine expert at the Lahey Clinic in Burlington, Mass.

Obviously, when traveling, you still need to remain diligent: washing hands frequently, not traveling when you're sick to avoid contaminating other passengers, maintaining a healthy diet and exercise routine, but you can be less concerned with the dangers of contaminated airplane air.

 Links:

NY Times story: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/05/business/05cabin.html?ref=todayspaper


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