Passenger airlines being used to transport medical equipment

Flights in and out of Newark Liberty International Airport have been light over the past few weeks due to the coronavirus pandemic, meaning that passenger plans are now being put into use to transport medical cargo.

News 12 Staff

Apr 18, 2020, 2:15 AM

Updated 1,555 days ago

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Flights in and out of Newark Liberty International Airport have been light over the past few weeks due to the coronavirus pandemic, meaning that passenger plans are now being put into use to transport medical cargo.
A United Airlines flight that landed in Newark this week was carrying 50,000 protective masks. They were flown in from San Francisco and sent to area hospitals. The boxes contained a note that read, “Thanks to our health care heroes.”
Cargo shipments have always been big business at Newark Liberty, according to general manager Jim Gill.
“Cargo for us has always supported in the region about 22,000 jobs in our community, just at Newark alone,” says Gill. “The economic impact for Newark cargo operations is about $2.5 billion per year.”
Gill says that much of the cargo is now supporting the fight against COVID-10. He noted a recent Choice Aviation flight that transported 1,000 ventilators and 70,000 goggles.
Photos: The Heroes of the Coronavirus Pandemic
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And it is not just PPE. A lot of the cargo is also so-called “small packages” from all the online sales that are taking place while people are under quarantine.
And while most people won’t feel comfortable flying commercial airlines for a while, many airline companies are still transporting medical staff around the country.
“United brought in about 20 folks from San Francisco on a one-month assignment at New York Presbyterian” Gill says.


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