China, Coronavirus, Covid-19, Ireland, Personal Protective Equipment

China, Coronavirus

'Bíodh turas sábháilte agat': Air traffic control's good luck message to plane due to carry PPE from China

Aer Lingus flight E19018 left Dublin Airport at 10.53 am this morning.

28/03/2020 17:59:00

'Bíodh turas sábháilte agat': Air traffic control's good luck message to plane due to carry PPE from China

Aer Lingus flight E19018 left Dublin Airport at 10.53 am this morning.

THE PLANE THAT will be carrying some €20 million of personal protective equipment (PPE) back from China to Ireland tomorrow is currently making its way to Beijing.Aer Lingus flight E19018 left Dublin Airport at 10.53 am this morning and is scheduled to arrive in the Chinese capital at 8.13 pm tonight Irish time.

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The Airbus A330-302 cargo plane will then be loaded with PPE including masks, gowns and goggles before it makes the over 8,000 km flight back to Ireland.As the plane departed Dublin this morning, air traffic controllers from the Irish Aviation Authority radioed a good luck message to the crew of the plane:;

Air traffic control: Roger, that’s great, thanks, I have a message for you as well if you’re ready to copy.EI9018: Yeah go ahead.Air traffic control: We’d like to wish you and all the crew a safe and successful flight and also to say a big thank you for all your efforts to fight the Covid-19 pandemic from everyone here at the Irish Aviation Authority. Bíodh turas sábháilte agat [Have a safe journey].

EI9018: Go raibh maith agat, I’ll pass it on to the rest of the crew, and we’re quite happy to be able to do it. Thank you. Some of the PPE awaiting collection in China Source: AnneOConnorHSESpeaking this morning, Health Minister Simon Harris said tomorrow’s return flight will contain about €20 million worth of PPE with more flights to come over the coming days.

“We usually buy about €15 million worth of what we call personal protective equipment, face mask, gowns, goggles, shields, etc. in the year. This year, we’re going to spend €225 million,” Harris told RTÉ’s Morning Ireland. The question every healthcare worker wants to know is when is it going to arrive, the first plane is your back from China tomorrow, about €20 million worth. And then I think there are 10 flights due between then and the first of April. So from tomorrow, we will have flights arriving on a daily basis, bringing millions and millions of pieces of personal protective equipment. Flight EI9018's location at 2.45 pm on Saturday. Source:

A shortage of PPE for healthcare workers was raised in the Dáil during the week and a number of campaigns are underway calling for donations of equipment to Irish hospitals.Doctor’s working in St James’s Hospital in Dublin made an appeal this week to various industries for donations of PPE.

A worker at Chinese end of the supply chain. Source: AnneOConnorHSESpeaking on Thursday, Chief Clinical Officer at the HSE Dr Colm Henry said that stock of certain items is low but that the HSE is confident that stocks will last until the new supply arrives.

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“We’re in discussions with our hospitals community to make sure to reinforce the message as to how they should be used appropriately by those people who most need them,” he said.“The first plane will be leaving Sunday, it will be landing, I don’t have exact details but as soon as it comes from China on Monday and distribution will begin immediately. As I said, to the sites that are most the depleted and the sites with the greatest need in terms of concentration of Covid-19 patients.”

- With reporting by Nicky Ryan

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