CJIA to acquire sanitisation/screening towers within weeks

– discussions underway for on-site PCR testing

The Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA) is set to increase its capabilities to combat COVID-19 with the acquisition of sanitisation tunnels. This was revealed by Minister of Public Works, Hon. Bishop, Juan Edghill during an interview with DPI.

A typical sanitisation tunnel

 “These [tunnels] are specially set. You pass through it, it tests your temperature and it sanitises your entire body,” Minister Edghill explained.

Championing the major upgrade that is expected within a few weeks, Minister Edghill said the tunnels will eliminate the need for airport staff to individually sanitise passengers since the process will be automated and seamless.

Reflecting on the experience at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre (ACCC) where Members of Parliament are individually sanitised to enter the dome, the Minister remarked once funding is available, ACCC will model after CJIA with its own sanitisation tower.

On the subject of COVID-19 testing at the airport, Minister Edghill stated that talks are underway with an operator from the private sector to have arriving passengers tested.

According to Minister Edghill, “the private sector operator has indicated that they have their equipment already in the country and it’s a matter of working out the modalities. It is going to take about 3 or 4 hours to get the test done at the airport, brought to the lab, tested and the result I guess would be transmitted back to the airport electronically.”

Minister Edghill noted there are ongoing discussions on a guideline that will dictate the maximum number of arriving passengers that can be in a specified waiting area pending the COVID-19 results from the PCR tests.

Minister of Public Works, Hon. Bishop Juan Edghill

Acknowledging that the Coronavirus will be around for an indefinite time, the Minister held that the Government is committed to ensuring the airport is prepared to facilitate its operations during the resumption of commercial flights.

The country’s two main international airports continue to allow limited repatriation, cargo, emergency and other flights which are approved by the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA).