Air passengers in Bandung surprised with MERS drill

Air passengers in Bandung surprised with MERS drill
Streets of Jalan MH Thamrin in Jakarta, Indonesia.
PHOTO: The Straits Times

The Bandung Airport Health Authority (KKP) in West Java conducted on Monday a simulated evacuation of passengers suspected of contracting the Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS).

The simulation was carried out at the city's Husein Sastranegara International Airport, involving passengers of a newly landed Lion Air plane serving the Surabaya-Bandung route.

At least 160 passengers, who were not informed of the drill to measure their actual response, appeared shocked and confused when four KKP officers wearing protective gear, such as masks, body protectors and gloves, entered the plane and checked their body temperature.

"This is the procedure when any passenger has been infected [with MERS]," Bandung KKP head Ananto Prasetya Hadi told passengers who complained about not being allowed to exit the plane.

Ananto said the drill was conducted because Indonesia was considered at high risk of MERS.

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