SeaTac International Airport. (Sue Misao / The Herald)

SeaTac International Airport. (Sue Misao / The Herald)

Port of Seattle, airlines respond to COVID-19 with new health measures

Changes at Sea-Tac Airport include more hand sanitizer, training for biohazard cleaning.

The Port of Seattle, which owns and operates Sea-Tac International Airport, Fisherman’s Terminal and various other terminals, announced new health and safety changes in response to the novel coronavirus.

The Port reported it would be installing 100 hand sanitizers at “security checkpoints, jet bridges, boarding gate locations, ground transportation centers” across Sea-Tac Airport. “Airlines have been adding their own sanitizer sources at check-in counters and gate areas,” according to the press release.

The Port has also trained its janitorial contractors in biohazard cleaning should it become necessary, according to the press release.

Alaska Airlines and Delta Airlines, which serve about 75% of the flights from Sea-Tac, according to the Port, also announced new health and safety protocols. Both airlines are enhancing their cleaning of aircrafts, and Delta will be sanitizing and disinfecting all “tableware, dishes, cutlery and glassware,” according to the airline.

In an updated press release from March 2, Alaska Airlines announced that flight attendants may wear gloves and alter their beverage service to no longer refill cups. Additionally, Alaska Airlines is pausing the use of its fingerprint biometric scanner in airport lounges.

The Port and airlines, in conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control recommendations, are urging travelers to stay home if they are sick with an acute respiratory illness. Alaska Airlines is offering exchanges for tickets purchased between Feb. 27 and March 12, with some exceptions. More information about cancellations and refunds can be found on www.alaskaair.com/content/advisories/travel-advisories.


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