Taiwan fined EVA Air $ 35,000 after the pilot was held liable for COVID an infection

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Employees wearing masks to prevent the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) walk past shops at Taoyuan International Airport in Taipei, Taiwan

TAIPEI (Reuters) – Taiwan’s Department of Transportation fined EVA Airways Corp. on Thursday of T $ 1 million (US $ 35,000).

Taiwan had not reported any domestic transmission since April 12 as of this week, thanks to early and effective measures to combat the virus, including wearing mass masks and strict quarantines for all comers.

However, the government was rocked by the announcement of the domestic infection of a woman who is friends with a New Zealand pilot who has been confirmed to have been infected earlier this week after flying routes to the United States.

EVA Air released the pilot who was not named and who is being treated in the hospital.

The case sparked public anger after the government said he had not reported all of his contacts and locations he had been, nor wore a face mask in the cockpit when he should have.

In a statement referring to the “riot” caused by the case, the Ministry of Transport quoted its Minister Lin Chia-lung as saying that the airline had not fully implemented epidemic prevention measures.

The ministry will impose a fine of T $ 1 million for violations of regulations related to COVID-19, the maximum legal fine it can impose, it added.

The ministry will require airlines to step up their epidemic prevention measures for flight crews while introducing their own new rules.

EVA Air, which has already apologized for the incident, did not immediately respond to a request for comment. It was not possible to reach the pilot for comment. EVA Air, like most airlines, operates a very reduced schedule due to global border restrictions.

($ 1 = 28.1190 Taiwan dollars)

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