JetBlue Bans Passenger After He Waited Until His Plane Landed To Notify Crew He Tested Positive For Coronavirus
For one JetBlue passenger, public health was less of a concern than getting to West Palm Beach, Florida.
While his coronavirus test result was up in the air, so was he, in the close vicinity of other travelers.
And it all came crashing down upon landing, with the test result coming back positive for the virus.
COVID-19 has sharpened global nerves to as taut as they've been in years. Multiple countries have completely locked down, global travel is severely reduced or stopped altogether and nearly every facet of daily life's mundane behaviors has been upturned by new, necessary precautions.
Nowhere is that new normal more evident than in the universe of long-distance travel.
Planes are bastions of the global crossover of germs. In theory, strange microscopic pathogens might hitch a ride on some guy from the Eastern hemisphere who flies to the Southwest region of the U.S, leaving something in the seat fibers to be ushered along when the plane lands in Argentina by sundown.
Obviously, the ability for air travel to spread COVID-19 at alarming rates is not lost on the average traveler.
So when one passenger on a NYC to Florida JetBlue flight, upon landing, shared the news that he just received word that he tested positive for the coronavirus, the airline company did not waste anytime conducted its response: the passenger was swiftly banned for life.
JetBlue released a statement regarding the situation.
"Last night's event put our crew members, customers, and federal and local officials in an unsettling situation that could have easily been avoided, and as such, this customer will not be permitted to fly on JetBlue in the future,"
According to CNN, the passenger boarded the plane in New York City's John F. Kennedy International Airport after taking a coronavirus test. At the time he stepped on the plane, he was still awaiting the results of the test.
During the flight, the passenger received word that the coronavirus test came back positive.
When the flight landed in Palm Beach International Airport, he informed crew members of the test results.
Immediately, JetBlue and both airports kicked things into high gear, CNN reported.
JFK used security camera footage to trace his route through the airport before boarding the plane in NYC and cleaned those areas intensely.
JetBlue, of course, sanitized the plane. And Palm Beach Airport closed Concourse A after the flight's passengers passed through the area.
One day after the incident, Palm Beach Airport is fully open.
Capt. Albert Borroto of Palm Beach Fire and Rescue, who helped respond to the emergency situation in Concourse A, commented on their work.
"Passengers in the vicinity of the positive patient were advised of monitoring procedures. The rest of the passengers were released to go home and given directions ... to call the health department with any medical concerns."
Twitter was vicariously furious about this guy's behavior.
@AlamoOnTheRise @nytimes Unbelievable. https://t.co/vM3s8d86ny— DeniseVert 🆘 (@DeniseVert 🆘)1584042590.0
@nytimes So he was concerned enough to get tested but also thought, this is a good time time fly!?— Danielle Thompson (@Danielle Thompson)1584033425.0
@nytimes People are so selfish https://t.co/v58fpwbwE2— Abraham Cavazos (@Abraham Cavazos)1584033450.0
Obligatory PSA: If you're awaiting coronavirus test results, know where you stand before boarding a plane or interacting with others.