A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that thousands of people may have been exposed to COVID-19 on airplanes.
CDC officials say nearly 11,000 travelers may have been exposed to one of the 1,600 known cases of people flying while contagious with coronavirus, reported the New York Post. Although this report has been released, experts have not been able to confirm a single case of viral transmission on a plane in the United States.
“An absence of cases identified or reported is not evidence that there were no cases,” CDC spokeswoman Caitlin Shockey said.
“CDC is not able to definitively determine that potential cases were associated (or not) with exposure in the air cabin or through air travel given the numerous opportunities for potential exposure associated with the entire travel journey and widespread global distribution of the virus,” she added.
Studies published by the CDC also found data that the deadly virus may have spread on airplanes in other countries.
The most recent report described how a Vietnam Airlines passenger likely spread COVID-19 to 14 fellow travelers on a March 1 flight from London to Hanoi. Researchers confirm that the plane had 217 people aboard.
Throughout the United States, airlines typically now require all passengers to wear masks while on board.
One airline, specifically Delta, is not playing when it comes to their face mask policy. Earlier this year, the airline’s CEO revealed they had already banned over 100 passengers who refused to wear a mask on their flights.
Delta has required passengers to wear a face mask since May 1.
“We’ve been steadily and rather aggressively stepping up our enforcement of the mask policy,” CEO Ed Bastian told “Today.” “You cannot board a Delta plane unless you have a mask on. If you board the plane and you insist on not wearing your mask, we will insist that you don’t fly Delta into the future.”
Bastian then added: “We already have over 100 people we’ve put on that list.”