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Internal paper from the airline Eurowings: How crews should now enforce the mask requirement


Masks are compulsory on airplanes, but they are difficult to enforce for on-board personnel. An internal Eurowings paper shows how the cabin crew should master the balancing act – and what the passengers are threatened with.

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Eurowings flight attendants at Cologne/Bonn Airport

Photo: Marius Becker/ dpa

The Infection Protection Act is clear: masks must always be worn on planes, subways and buses, on Deutsche Bahn or in taxis.

Because there were repeated arguments on board aircraft when the crew pointed out to passengers that they were required to wear them, Lufthansa, for example, authorized its crews at the end of May to no longer have to enforce the mask requirement at any price.

In an internal risk assessment, the group came to the conclusion that enforcing the mask requirement is a greater security risk than allowing maskless passengers to do so.

But because the rule of having to wear mouth and nose protection still exists, things are more complicated.

In an internal paper to Eurowings flight staff, the flight operations and cabin management of the Lufthansa subsidiary explains the exact procedure.

Accordingly, maskless passengers must still be warned.

Those who refuse to wear masks should be verbally informed of the legal obligation to wear them at the gate and when boarding the aircraft.

Should guests nevertheless resist, it is up to the captain to exclude these guests "from carriage according to the general regulations".

The on-board announcements also remain unchanged and reference is still made to the mask obligation.

However, the management formulates that the crew no longer has to deal with persistent mask refusals during the flight as follows: »For reasons of de-escalation and following the principle of proportionality, however, there is no further enforcement obligation by the crew during the flight.«

A fine risk only for the individual guest - not the crew

If another passenger complains that a fellow passenger is not wearing a mask, flight attendants should address the mask-less guest, the paper says.

"Should there be a disagreement between guests about wearing a mask, please point out the legal obligation to the guest without a mask."

At least with Eurowings, mask refusers do not have to expect a complaint from the airline.

»Guests who do not wear a mask will not be reported.

In the event of complaints from third parties, crews can refer to the possibility of reporting to the responsible authorities after landing.« According to the Infection Protection Act, there is only a risk of fines for the individual guest, »but not the airline or you as the operating crew or responsible aircraft pilot«. it says in the manual.

Incidentally, the crew must always wear a mask “in direct customer contact”.

However, if there are no guests on board, the aircraft is considered a permanent establishment.

Then there is no need to wear a mask.

Source: spiegel

All business articles on 2022-06-23

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