Flight attendants should wear disposable diapers while in the air to avoid having to use pathogen-riddled airplane toilets, China’s civil aviation body has suggested in a seemingly extreme move to battle Covid-19 on flights.
“It is recommended that the cabin crew wear disposable diapers and avoid using the toilet barring special circumstances, to avoid infection risk,” the guidelines from the Civil Aviation Administration of China read.
The bizarre suggestion is sandwiched among more typical pandemic-related recommendations, such as a requirement that cabin crew be provided with medical-grade face masks, disposable rubber gloves and protective clothing including shoe covers.
The document, titled Technical Guidelines for Epidemic Prevention and Control for Airlines, Sixth Edition, was published late last month in Chinese, but only came to the attention of English-language media on Thursday.
Flight attendants are also advised to manage passengers’ restroom use “in an orderly manner,” with an order to prohibit them from gathering outside the toilet to wait for a vacancy. One toilet is to be set aside for quarantined personnel, while the first-class toilet is for flight crew.
Airline personnel are advised to monitor the mental health of their cabin crews, with “full consideration” given to “psychological state, personality characteristics, current family life pressure.”
While airline bathrooms are notoriously disgusting, scientists are working on the problem. Japan’s ANA airline has devised a no-touch door for onboard toilets, while Boeing has applied for a patent on a self-cleaning toilet that uses ultraviolet light to nuke germs in between uses.