In the fight against the corona virus, the Federal Council repeatedly appeals to the population to take social distancing seriously. However, as reader E.H. * says, this is not implemented at Zurich Airport. The 52-year-old had landed in Zurich on Saturday after a long and early return trip from Australia: “I had the feeling that nobody at Zurich Airport took the corona virus seriously.”
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Not only was the only visible disinfectant dispenser empty, there was also a lack of airport employees on site who checked the distance rules or pointed out the social distancing to the people. The result: «The travelers never kept their distance in the Skymetro, at customs or at baggage claim. We were often very close to each other. » Only in the case of an escalator were the travelers made aware of the personnel to keep the safety distance, said H.
He was also amazed that there were no temperature controls. “It’s commonplace at the airports in Bangkok and Abu Dhabi.” For H., the actions of the Zurich airport operator are incomprehensible. «I am really shocked and find it unprofessional. That certainly does not meet the requirements of the federal government. »
«It was just chaotic»
Reader L.G. * had a similar experience at Zurich Airport on Sunday. Together with her fiance, she traveled from Bangkok via Abu Dhabi to Zurich earlier than planned. As the 24-year-old says, the passengers were still divided into groups after landing on the plane, which were allowed to leave the plane in stages. “I thought that was very good,” says G.
But her opinion was soon to change: “The whole thing turned into a ridiculous action,” says the 24-year-old. The reason: «Because of the division into groups, it initially took over two hours before we could get off the plane. We were then crammed together again in the gateway. » This is incomprehensible to the young woman. «Suddenly nobody was interested in the safety distance. The staff even asked us to move closer together. »
The security clearance was not observed during passport control. “The joke was that after the passport control, an airport employee suddenly came to us very excited and said that we should keep the safety distance, please.” After all, the staff at baggage claim would have warned people about social distancing. The luggage was divided into two bands. For the 24-year-old, the case is clear: “Exemplary action looks different.”
“In general, we pay attention to high hygiene standards”
As is stated at Zurich Airport on request, great importance is attached to the hygiene and behavior recommendations being implemented by the Federal Office of Public Health (BAG). “In general, we pay attention to high hygiene standards and awareness in all areas,” said spokeswoman Raffaela Stelzer. For this purpose, the posters of the BAG were also put up, their flyers put on, disinfection dispensers free of charge at these information points, and over 300 protective panes at check-in, information counters for the protection of employees and passengers, said Stelzer.
She emphasizes: “As an airport operator, we are prepared if the FOPH should order more stringent measures for Swiss airports.” However, emergency plans for dealing with highly contagious diseases would already exist within the framework of the emergency organization. Stelzer adds: “It is up to the federal health authorities, in general
Order health checks upon entry. » So far, no such instructions have been received, said the spokeswoman.
Measures and process adjustments
A message from Zurich Airport followed on Monday that the instructions from the Federal Council regarding social distancing were also observed. Special measures and process adjustments are to help, as the message goes on to say. Among other things, the airlines are encouraged to slow down passengers boarding long-haul aircraft in order to ensure a distance between passengers. In addition, around ten employees in Dock E let travelers dosed into the Skymetro and ensure that there is sufficient distance when queuing, as the message says.
Employees are also on duty to advise passengers and visitors of the distance recommendations. According to the announcement, an announcement is made several times an hour throughout the airport, which is intended to draw attention to compliance with rules of conduct regarding social distancing.
Arrival 1 was also closed. Upon arrival 2, according to the message, there should only be an entrance for collectors. Access is also limited. A numbering system was introduced for this.
* Name of the editor known