After the 2019-nCoV respiratory disease, or otherwise known as the Coronavirus, unleashed its wrath on over a dozen countries. It is not officially considered a worldwide pandemic as of yet, but it is making its way there. The Allied Pilots Association (approximately 15,000 pilots) filed a lawsuit against American Airlines in Dallas, Texas, after a multitude of airlines canceled their flights to China, and American Airlines has and will not, as of yet, cancel.
Starting February 9th, American Airlines is going to suspend all flights from Los Angeles International Airport into Shanghai Pudong Airport. The airline crew members have increased risk of contracting the disease because they have a ground time sometimes over 24 hours between their flights, and China alone has a suspected 12,100 cases.
According to CNBC news, the disease is “transmitted through human contact, in droplets through sneezing or through touching germs left on inanimate objects.” Although the virus itself does not have as high of a mortality rate as SARS, which was a staggering 10%, there are many more cases developing and out of these numbers 20% develop severe respiratory failure and pneumonia.
American Airlines is not the only airline having issues with the suspension of incoming and outgoing flights to China. Delta pilots are pushing for them to be able to have the option to choose whether or not they want to fly these particular flights, because at the end of the day, as the Association of Professional Flight Attendants said in their statement, “Our safety is not for sale. We stand by our pilots.”