Passengers from coronavirus-hit Italy land back at Heathrow with NO checks for killer bug – The Sun

FEARS have been raised over a lack of medical checks on passengers arriving at British airports from coronavirus hotspots in Italy.

A GMB reporter filmed himself and other passengers walking through London's Heathrow Airport from a Milan flight without any health screening for the killer bug, known as COVID19.

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Nick Dixon, a Good Morning Britain correspondent, had returned to the UK after reporting on the deadly virus, which has rampaged through northern Italy, killing 17 people and infecting around 650.

Around 50,000 residents in 11 Italian towns in the north are under lockdown and unable to leave a cordoned section of the country before March 6.

More than 80,000 people in almost 50 countries have been infected with the virus, which has killed around 2,800 victims, the vast majority in China's Hubei province.

But despite Italy being at the epicentre of Europe's growing coronavirus crisis, Heathrow staff at Terminal didn't check passengers coming back from the region last night, GMB's Mr Dixon reported.


Mr Dixon said: "So I've just arrived back having spent four days in Milan. Just picked up my bags at Heathrow. And straight through.

"No checks from medical staff, no temperature checks, no thermal checks as we had when we arrived on Monday at Linate Airport.

"Simple. Got the bags, straight through. Surprising."

Sun Online has contacted Heathrow for comment.

The GMB video sparked anger among viewers.

One person tweeted: "What the ****. Why did a plane from Milan landed in England without checking passengers."

Another viewer wrote: "Some passengers escape the check in London Heathrow coming from Milan."

One person asked the Health Secretary, Matt Hancock: "Mr Hancock, whey have I just watched a GMB correspondent come through Heathrow Airport from Milan with no checks to see if he showed  symptoms of coronavirus?"

Brits are facing months of coronavirus chaos with sporting events, gigs and schools on lockdown to stop the spread of the killer bug.
Chief Medical Officer for England Prof Chris Whitty said today the UK will have to consider axing mass gatherings if the "virus intensifies"


Tourists who have returned from affected Italian regions with a cough, high temperature or shortness of breath since February 19 are being told to "self-isolate"

Affected passengers are being told to call NHS 111, stay indoors and avoid contact with other people immediately if they have travelled to the UK from "parts of northern Italy (anywhere north of Pisa, Florence and Rimini".

British Airways cancelled 22 flights from Heathrow to Milan as the coronavirus spread over northern Italy.

The carrier said it was merging a "small number" of flights over the next two weeks.

Heathrow is Britain's busiest airport, handling 88.1 million passengers in 2018.

The Foreign Office has advised against all but essential travel to ten small towns in Lombardy and one in Veneto (Vo’ Euganeo), which have been isolated by Italian authorities.

Any passengers who has returned to the UK from coronavirus-ravaged Hubei in China or Iran in the last 14 days should also self-isolate, even if they don't have symptoms, the Department of Health warned.

Enhanced monitoring is in place at Heathrow for direct flights to the UK from Thailand, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, and Malaysia.

This week, passengers set to travel to areas hit by the virus this week lashed out at the British government's "pitiful" response to travellers have been left with no official safety advice.

A 67-year-old passenger named Lea spoke told the Daily Mail that she had cancelled her trip from Stansted to Venice yesterday.

She said: "The government advice is not relevant to the situation. It's pitiful and no help whatsoever to anybody."

Philippa Rose, 26, was due to fly with her partner to Venice this Saturday to celebrate their anniversary.

She told the Daily Mail: As two young and fit individuals we aren't so worried about catching the virus itself, but more about the delays in getting home and the possibility of being quarantined over there."

She added: "It's despicable that in the wake of this outbreak, there has been radio silence from the officials we rely on for advice.

"Everything online is for those travelling to China/Asia and northing for Italy."

Diego Gullo, who flew from Milan to Gatwick on Thursday told Sky News how he had placed himself and his family in quarantine after returning from Codogno, the Italian town at the centre of the outbreak.

Speaking from his home in London, he said: "I haven't had any specific advice, there is no check in the UK.

"We did call 111 and we were not told anything in particular…they suggested to just continue as usual."

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