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90% of AA and Airport Security Staff Vaccinated as Preventive Measures against COVID-19 Further Enhanced at HKIA

2021/08/04

(HONG KONG, 4 August 2021, 1800hrs)  –  Airport Authority Hong Kong (AA) announced that close to 90% of its staff have already received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccination as of 1 August 2021. The AA has been introducing various initiatives to encourage vaccination among its staff as well as the entire airport community on the airport island. Over 90% of the staff of the Aviation Security Company Limited have received the first dose of vaccine, while all frontline staff who receive arriving passengers at the Temporary Specimen Collection Centre operated by Department of Health (DH) at Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) have been fully vaccinated. The AA will continue to work closely with its business partners to encourage members of the airport community to get vaccinated.

The AA has taken the lead in promoting vaccination in the airport community, including providing vaccination leave for airport staff. AA staff as well as staff of AA’s contractors that provide airport services enjoy paid-leave for vaccination. Other than the lucky draw campaign launched to give away 10 000 air tickets to airport staff who receive COVID-19 vaccination, there are health talks and videos to provide relevant information on COVID-19 vaccination.

Since 1 August 2021, all airport staff entering the airport restricted area are required to present proof of full COVID-19 vaccination or valid negative COVID-19 test result. The implementation of the new requirement has been smooth.

In addition to vaccination, more tests have been conducted for airport staff. Over the past six weeks, ten rounds of compulsory test were completed for airport staff who were subject to the requirements stipulated in the Government’s compulsory testing notices.  As announced by the Government, regular testing for airport staff working at terminal and airport restricted area will also be conducted.

As an important gateway connecting Hong Kong and the world, HKIA has since the start of the pandemic adopted various effective measures to protect both passengers and airport staff against COVID-19. In view of the threat posed by the more infectious variants of the virus, in addition to the established preventive measures, the AA requires all local ground staff to avoid contact with air crew. Staff including ramp coordinators, cabin cleaning staff, engineers or mechanics who work in the cabin, as well as catering staff, are not allowed to go into the cabin if air crew are present. Staff are required to use communication tools to avoid contact, but if face-to-face interactions are unavoidable, they must also wear face shields in addition to face masks, and maintain 1.5 metres distance from each other. 

All escort services for air crew provided by passenger handling agents and local airline staff are banned.

Apart from segregation from air crew, cabin cleaning and catering staff are required to be segregated while they are in work-related areas such as offices and changing rooms. They must wear sufficient protective gear when working inside the cabin and be disinfected afterwards. Any waste, off-loaded items from the cabin, and used protective gear must be properly managed.

A host of measures are also implemented to segregate arriving passengers from airport staff, which include segregating passengers and airport staff with separate channels and dining areas in the terminal.

Vivian Cheung, Executive Director, Airport Operations of the AA, said, “During the pandemic the AA and its business partners have maintained normal operations under very challenging operating and business conditions, while complying with different measures on quarantine and infection control at the airport. I would like to extend my gratitude to all business partners and their staff who have been very supportive and spared no efforts on implementing various health and safety measures in order to safeguard the public health of the airport community and passengers at HKIA.”

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