Singapore Airlines takes measures after Zika arrives on flight

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Singapore Airlines’ standard screening process would be for patients with certain health conditions

Singapore Airlines is taking steps to meet European air passenger health requirements following the arrival of a Zika virus-carrying ball in its flight from Cuba.

In a notice to staff, the carrier said it would “recruit a minimum of 40 crew members with minimum basic vaccination requirements”.

Sick passengers would be banned from flying.

Singapore Airlines said it had been given a certificate of air quality by the Seychelles.

It was not clear whether the country had been found to be carrying traces of the Zika virus, which is spread through mosquitoes.

Zika’s possible link to microcephaly, a birth defect in which babies are born with abnormally small heads, has put a question mark over flights to Latin America and the Caribbean.

The virus was first reported in Africa in 1947 and later spread to Asia.

Last year Singapore, the only city-state with flights to the Caribbean and Mexico, spent S$10m (£6.3m) to buy 14 Bombardier Q400 aircraft to combat an increase in the amount of flights from the region.

Singapore’s airport has a ring of planes with filters designed to prevent rising humidity from breeding mosquitoes.

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