Since the pandemic began, airlines have been implementing a variety of new measures to keep passengers and crew safe from COVID-19. One of the stranger methods is advising flight attendants to wear diapers. According to new guidelines released on November 25 by the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), disposable diapers would enable flight attendants to do their business without having to use the bathroom, which could be a touchpoint for infection.
In the section on personal protective equipment, cabin crew on flights to and from high-risk countries are advised to wear “medical masks, double-layer disposable medical gloves, goggles, disposable hats, disposable protective clothing, and disposable shoe covers. It is recommended that cabin crew members wear disposable diapers and avoid using the lavatories barring special circumstances to avoid infection risks.”
While bathrooms on airplanes are notoriously unpleasant to use and can certainly pose a risk for transmission of COVID-19, diapers for flight attendants is a big ask. This summer, Japan’s national carrier, All Nippon Airways, announced it was testing elbow-operated bathroom doors so passengers and crew members could avoid infection touchpoints.