Tags: Coronavirus | Health Topics | Travel | Vaccines | Cold/Flu | flying | study

Expert Cited in COVID Study on Safe Flying Disputes Report's Conclusion

a boeing 737 max comes in for a landing over green trees
(Ted S. Warren/AP)

By    |   Monday, 19 October 2020 03:58 PM

An infectious disease expert whose research was referred to in a study by the large aviation companies to encourage air travel during the pandemic said the report's conclusion flying has almost no risk is faulty, the New York Post reported Monday.

Dr. David Freedman, a University of Alabama professor, labeled as "bad math" the contention by the International Air Transport Association's (IATA) report the risk of contracting the virus on a flight was "virtually nonexistent," as long as those on board wear masks.

The study's conclusion stated there were only 44 cases among 1.4 billion passengers, but Freedman pointed out "1.2 billion passengers during 2020 is not a fair denominator, because hardly anybody was tested. How do you know how many people really got infected? The absence of evidence is not evidence of absence."

Freedman said he even turned down an invitation to a recent IATA presentation on the findings with Airbus, Boeing and Embraer, saying "They wanted me at that press conference to present the stuff, but honestly I objected to the title they had put on it."

An IATA spokesperson defended the group's report as a "relevant and credible" sign flying is a low risk for contracting the virus, adding, however "We've not claimed it's a definitive and absolute number."

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An infectious disease expert whose research was referred to in a study by the large aviation companies to encourage air travel during the pandemic said the report's conclusion flying has almost no risk is faulty, the New York Post reported Monday.
flying, study, research, science, covid-19, testing, pandemic
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2020-58-19
Monday, 19 October 2020 03:58 PM
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