Due to the shortage and limited supply from the government, airport personnel in Tacloban and Zamboanga decided to produce their own face masks to protect themselves from the deadly coronavirus disease.
“As COVID-19’s threats remain, our frontliners have started to think of creative ways on how to protect themselves from the virus. With limited protective gear, CAAP’s staff at Tacloban Airport (or Daniel Z. Romuldez Airport) and Zamboanga International Airport (ZIA) started initiating the production of their own masks,” said Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines spokesperson Eric Apolonio.
Apolonio said CAAP Tacloban Nurse Fatima Obiña saw the opportunity to be resourceful after learning that there is a shortage of face masks at the airport.
With this need in mind, Obiña sought the help of a seamstress friend who gladly sew 200 masks for the airport’s staff. Obiña said that it is better for them to take action instead of relying on donations and waiting for supplies.
In Zamboanga International Airport (ZIA), employees have also launched efforts to aid their frontliners by producing face shields for the airport’s medical staff.
The ZIA project is a joint effort by the airport’s Medical staff, Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting unit, Area Corporate Planning Office, and Security and Intelligence Service.
In creating face shields, they used acetate sheets, dishwashing foam, and garters. The face shields will be mainly used by the airport’s nurses, security personnel, and flight recorders.
CAAP officials lauded the initiative of the airports’ staff in producing these essential items, which are now being used by the airport’s frontliners. They said the move showcases the ingenuity and resilience of Filipinos in these trying times.
Aside from Tacloban and Zamboanga airports, other CAAP airports, which has remained operational since the Luzon-wide and provincial community quarantines, have also been proactively addressing and managing the needs of both the passengers and its staff.