Staff wait for passengers at the Cathay Pacific check-in counters at the Hong Kong International Airport on Nov 20, 2021.
(BERTHA WANG / AFP)
HONG KONG – Hong Kong-based carrier Cathay Pacific Airways said on Saturday two of its aircrew who have tested positive for the Omicron variant were sacked for breaching medical surveillance regulations.
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Cathay said five of its aircrew had tested positive following their return to Hong Kong from duty, and investigation into the cases had indicated a serious breach of protocols by some of those individuals.
The actions of these individuals are extremely disappointing, as they undermine the otherwise exemplary dedication and compliance shown by our over 10,000 aircrew.
"Failure to comply with medical surveillance regulations will lead to disciplinary procedures. Two of the individuals are no longer employed by Cathay Pacific," the carrier said in a statement. It gave no further details. The regulations include spending a period quarantining at home after flying.
"The actions of these individuals are extremely disappointing, as they undermine the otherwise exemplary dedication and compliance shown by our over 10,000 aircrew," Cathay said, adding it would work closely with health authorities to reinforce public health protection.
Hong Kong's health officials said on Friday the Omicron variant of the coronavirus has made its way past some of the world's toughest COVID-19 restrictions, with the city reporting its first cases outside its strict quarantine system.
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The government said on Saturday it was investigating eight additional Omicron cases.