How quarantining after travel will fundamentally change our lives: aviation expert explains

22 May 2020, 15:54 | Updated: 22 May 2020, 16:05

By Fiona Jones

How quarantining after travel will fundamentally change our lives - an aviation expert explains all to LBC.

Home Secretary Priti Patel is expected to outline the coronavirus quarantine plan for travellers to the UK in today's press conference at 5pm.

Inbound passengers could face spot checks and £1,000 fines if they do not self-isolate for two weeks after arriving in the country. Road hauliers and medical professionals will be exempt from this, as will passengers from Ireland and the Channel Islands.

Andrew Charlton said he had two opinions on this potential plan; as a human, he sees it as the only way to deal with the asymptomatic but as someone in the aviation industry, it will "fundamentally change" whether people travel.

"It is going to fundamentally change the way in which you plan for trips because you're not going to take a one week holiday if you're going to do a two week quarantine when you get there...and a two week quarantine when you get home," Mr Charlton said.

The aviation expert said this will fundamentally change whether human beings choose to travel
The aviation expert said this will fundamentally change whether human beings choose to travel. Picture: LBC/PA

"There goes the weekend mini break, there goes the stag do... if you're going to travel on business you've got to make sure you get as many things as possible in to one trip instead of maybe two or three," Mr Charlton pointed out.

The aviation analyst observed that current international law focuses, in essence, upon enforcing legalities on people coming in to the country, with much less priority on people going out.

"We will need an international and intergovernmental agreement to allow that to be turned around so that passengers that pass the test departing are accepted on faith when they arrive," Mr Charlton said.

"The question then becomes: is temperature testing alone enough and the answer to that I think, and Professor Van-Tam seems to support this, is probably it isn't." He suggested temperature testing should be part of a layered approach, with quarantining being the most effective layer.

"If we could make a system which could prove you had genuinely quarantined for 14 days before going to the airport and passing the temperature test and getting on the aeroplane...that certainly means your two week holiday in New York is better spent actually in New York."

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