Southwest CEO Gary Kelly has examined positive for Covid-19 days after he testified earlier than the Senate Commerce Committee.
Whereas Kelly examined damaging “a number of occasions previous to the listening to” he finally “examined positive for COVID-19 after returning house, [is] experiencing gentle signs, and taking a PCR take a look at,” a Southwest spokesperson mentioned Friday, including Kelly has been absolutely vaccinated and obtained the booster earlier this yr.
Background: Kelly sat alongside Doug Parker, CEO of American Airways; Scott Kirby, head of United Airways; John Laughter, EVP and chief of operations for Delta Air Traces; and Sara Nelson, president of the Affiliation of Flight Attendants-CWA. The leaders didn’t put on masks whereas testifying earlier than lawmakers on Wednesday.
Kelly has taken warmth for suggesting on the listening to that masks aren’t a lot of a deterrent whereas on board plane, that are outfitted with top-of-the-line filtration techniques that assist cut back airborne particles from lingering all through the cabin.
In a dialogue about masks effectiveness throughout the listening to, Kelly mentioned research into plane filtration techniques present “masks don’t add a lot, if something, within the air cabin setting.”
“It is rather protected, very prime quality in comparison with every other indoor setting,” he mentioned Wednesday.
The dialogue then changed into cross-talk between members and leaders who have been making an attempt to again up the declare that plane are protected; nonetheless, in latest days Parker and Nelson have needed to stroll again Kelly’s feedback to strengthen that the aviation trade is following by on CDC protocols and medical group steerage to make use of masks on planes.
The Biden administration prolonged its federal masks mandate on main transportation techniques, together with at bus and prepare stations, till mid-March as circumstances within the U.S. proceed to surge.
Chair of the committee Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) mentioned she is feeling high quality after the listening to, and has been suggested to attend till Saturday to check.
“I hoping that individuals proceed to get vaccinated and proceed to observe protocols,” she mentioned in accordance with a Capitol Hill pool report. “We weren’t in shut proximity. We might have fist-bumped on the finish.”
Nelson, who obtained her booster this week, mentioned she is following CDC protocols and can take a look at a number of occasions inside the five- to seven-day beneficial interval. Kirby, in the meantime, examined damaging as of Friday. A spokesperson for American mentioned Parker is symptom-free, absolutely vaccinated and getting examined this afternoon.