Virgin Atlantic to Deliver Over 43 Million PPE Items to UK in Next Three Months

Virgin Atlantic will deliver over 43 million items
of personal protective equipment (PPE) to the UK onboard special
cargo-only flights which have been chartered by the Department of
Health and Social Care and the NHS throughout May, June and July.

The airline
resumed flights to China on Friday, 3 April following special
dispensation from the CAA and assistance from the British Embassy
in China. Since then, Virgin Atlantic has operated nine 26-hour
round trips between London Heathrow and Shanghai. The flights use
both the cargo hold as well as passenger seats and overhead
lockers to carry on average 1,400 boxes of essential equipment.


Virgin Atlantic Boeing 787-9 reg: G-VYUM. Picture by Steven Howard of TravelNewsAsia.com Click to enlarge.

The flights are manned by seven pilots and four
cabin crew who rotate duties and rest time. Each flight contains
on average 16 tonnes of essential items needed to help fight the
COVID19 pandemic in the UK.

Since the first charter flight, over 150 tonnes of
medical supplies and PPE have been transported, including 66
ventilators, over two million face masks, 600,000 face shields and
visors, one million disposable gloves, 38,000 items for eye
protection, 125,000 protective coveralls and isolation gowns and
over 25,000 battery operated or manual ventilators.

Dominic Kennedy, Managing Director, Virgin
Atlantic Cargo, said, “We are so incredibly grateful for all the
work our healthcare professionals are doing during this
challenging time and we’re pleased we can play our part by
bringing crucial medical supplies and PPE in to the UK for the NHS
teams working on the front line. Despite a decrease in passengers
travelling, demand to transport cargo remains strong, and our
teams are working hard keeping global supply chains running and
transporting essential supplies around the world. We’re looking
forward to continuing to partner with the Department for Health
and the NHS, working with them on daily flights from Shanghai to
London throughout May, June and July transporting over 1,500
tonnes of supplies that the teams here in the UK urgently need to
care for patients.”

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