PALS Return to Flying Protocol

flying protocol

The Mission Coordination team will be conducting Enhanced Passenger and Pilot screening and will:


  • Exclude any passengers with symptoms consistent with COVID-19, including but not limited to cough, sneezing, chest congestion, shortness of breath, fever, and loss of taste or smell


  • Exclude any passengers with known exposure to a COVID-19-infected person within the previous two week period, including anyone who has been notified of possible exposure through contact tracing


  • Confirm that passengers are able to enter and exit an aircraft without any assistance or physical contact other than their companion


  • Evaluate any passenger whose medical condition prevents them from complying with droplet transmission protections (e.g., inability to wear a surgical mask)


  • Secure revised medical releases with physicians’ approval to include a statement of necessity of travel considering all risks to pilots and passengers within 24/48 hours of the flight



  • Limit the number of passengers to the patient and a necessary companion if needed


  • Encourage flights in larger cabin aircraft whenever possible


  • Secure signed COVID-19 Release and Indemnity Forms for both pilots and passengers prior to every flight


  • Social distancing of 6 feet where the opportunities permit


  • Deny requests for anyone who is not willing to adhere to best practices


  • Provide access to information regarding risks, protecting oneself, disinfecting, etc.


  • Follow up with pilots and passengers to check health status 14 days after flight


Suggested Pilot Precautions:


Pre Flight

  • Check AOPA’s Restrictions by State
  • Disinfect all surfaces with alcohol wipes and allow time to dry prior to your pre-flight preparations
  • All occupants must wash hands thoroughly or use hand sanitizer immediately before boarding
  • Wear protective gloves when handling passengers’ luggage or equipment; or wash hands thoroughly or apply hand sanitizer after such contact and before boarding
  • Wipe gloves with sanitizer or change gloves after every use
  • When pilots wear a mask while flying (recommended but not required), the microphone may fit through the side of the mask

In Flight

  • Maximize air flow through the cabin to the extent allowable with aircraft limitations and passenger comfort. Increase airflow through vents and fans if applicable
  • Require all passengers to wear protective masks or other acceptable face coverings (protective masks recommended for pilots but not required)
  • Avoid direct contact between passengers, such as shaking hands, hugging or other physical contact
  • Maintain as much physical distance as possible

Post Flight

  • During quick turn, wear a protective mask or face covering and avoid contact with ground personnel
  • Clean all surfaces with disinfectant wipes or solution, including headsets, seat belt buckles, arm rests, door handles, etc.
  • If possible, replace mic muffs for each passenger
  • Provide a thorough post-flight debrief to PALS



How to Protect Yourselves and Others

Cleaning and Disinfecting

Aircraft Disinfection and Cleaning Procedures

MedAire COVID-19 Advice and Answers to Your Questions

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest