As the new amended Civil Aviation Health safety measures for airports and aircraft during a Public Pandemic came into effect in the new week starting from Sunday, August 8, airlines can be fined for allowing passengers on the plane without verifying the status of their COVID-19 vaccination and a negative PCR test.
The gazetted order signed by Minister of Public Works Juan Edghill on Saturday last states, “Any aircraft operator who allows a passenger to board an aircraft without proof of vaccination and a negative molecular biological PCR test commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine of $250,000 for each passenger.”
These COVID tests, according to the order, does not include any rapid tests, including rapid PCR test and rapid tests using saliva samples. The order also prohibits any self-administered tests, or any COVID-19 tests done using home kits.
“If an individual took a PCR test more than 72 hours (or three days) prior to the flight but less than seven days, that individual will be required to have a second test done upon arrival. Individuals with a PCR test taken longer than 72 hours days beyond their flight will not be allowed to board the flight to Guyana, ‘ the order states.
This move is in light of the Government’s initiative to enforce stricter COVID-19 rules and guidelines in the light of the increasing infection rate and also the availability of vaccines in the country.
The gazetted order indicates that passengers arriving in Guyana must at least have a single dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. These vaccines include; Astra-Zeneca, Sputnik-V, Sino-pharm, Sinovac, Pfizer, Moderna, or Johnson and Johnson.
Persons who have been diagnosed with the virus less than three months before travel will be required to declare a medically certified ‘Certificate of Clearance.’
Also, aircraft operators will be required to ensure that each checked baggage is sanitised before being placed in the hold of the aircraft.
Once unloaded from the aircraft, the baggage must also be immediately sanitised before being placed on trollies and in the baggage carousel system at the airport’s arrival terminal.