American Airlines abandons social distancing guidelines amid record COVID spikes

  • American Airlines abandons social distancing guidelines amid record COVID spikes

American Airlines abandons social distancing guidelines amid record COVID spikes

"Obviously, that's something that is of concern", Dr. Fauci said.

Also addressing the panel, top US infectious diseases official Anthony Fauci called American's decision "of concern". "I think in the confines of an airplane that becomes even more problematic". However, United Airlines never promised to leave seats empty, and American said last week that starting Wednesday it would drop its effort to keep half of all middle seats empty.

"I can tell you that when they announced that the other day, obviously there was substantial disappointment with American Airlines", Redfield said at a Senate Health Committee hearing.

Several U.S. airlines say they are limiting capacity on planes to between 60 per cent and 67 per cent of all seats. Although the US continues to report spikes in cases across the country, American Airlines announced that it will begin booking flights to full capacity again starting this week. He said American was sending the wrong message to the public.

As a precaution against the coronavirus, American Airlines is taking steps to maintain social distancing on its flights. The company said Friday it would inform passengers of the change and allow them to move to a more open flight, at no extra charge, if their flight is full.

Among other large US carriers, Delta Air Lines DAL.N and Southwest Airlines LUV.N are limiting the number of seats sold on their flights through at least September.

Senator Bernie Sanders wants the CDC to tell airlines that filling planes is "unacceptable behavior - they are endangering the lives of the American people".

COVID-19 cases more than doubled in June in at least 10 USA states, including Texas and Florida, a Reuters tally showed. Spirit, Frontier, and other low-cost-carriers have also continued to fill their planes. Masks will continue to be required for passengers and American Airlines crews.