NEWS: Flights from China haven't stopped

By Jacob Nakamura

[email protected]

(Tumon, Guam) Despite a presidential order to stop accepting flights from China, two United Airlines flights from its eastern city of Xiamen have been arriving daily on Guam.

Kandit reached out to Guam Homeland Security, the Guam International Airport Authority, and United Airlines after noticing flights UA2697 and UA 2699 on its way to Guam on a flight tracker. Both aircrafts landed at 6:51 p.m. and 7:51 p.m., respectively, at the airport.

Only an airport official responded.

"UA2697 and UA2669 were Tech stops originating in Xiamen en route to San Francisco," airport spokeswoman Rolenda Faasuamalie replied to Kandit. " Crew only.  No passengers.  These operations are aligned with current federal requirements relative to direct flights from China. Crew members are exempt."

There has been no reply to our questions whether anyone from the crew got off the plane, or whether anyone on Guam got on the plane. Ms. Faasuamalie did not clarify whether a "tech stop" meant a refueling, or maintenance that would require a Guam crew to enter the aircraft.

We also have not received answers from United Airlines to our questions:

  • What is the purpose of empty planes being flown by United?

  • Are the crew-members allowed to leave the plane? 

  • Are the crew-members free of Coronavirus infection?

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