In today’s update, easyJet grounds its entire fleet and its cabin staff are invited to join the NHS in the battle against the coronavirus update, Rolls-Royce reduces operations and the Meggitt ventilator consortium receives 10,000 orders.


easyJet grounds entire fleet

Low cost carrier easyJet has grounded its entire fleet of aircraft from today.

The move comes as a result of unprecedented travel restrictions imposed by governments in a bid to contain the global coronavirus pandemic and the implementation of national lockdowns across many European countries.

easyJet completed the last of its 650 rescue flights to repatriate more than 45,000 customers yesterday.

A statement issued on behalf of the carrier added it would continue to work with government bodies to operate additional rescue flights as requested.

easyJet Chief Executive Johan Lundgren, explained: “I am extremely proud of the way in which people across easyJet have given their absolute best at such a challenging time, including so many crew who have volunteered to operate rescue flights to bring our customers home.


Cabin crew invited to join NHS workers in coronavirus hospitals

Cabin crew with valuable first aid skills have been invited to join NHS workers in the hospitals set up to deal with the pandemic.

Virgin Atlantic and EasyJet staff trained in life saving will be invited to join doctors and nurses at NHS Nightingale, the 4,000-bed field hospital being built by the military and NHS at London’s ExCel centre, along with the those well being planned in Birmingham and Manchester.


Rolls-Royce reduces its UK civil aerospace operations

Rolls-Royce has announced that it has “significantly reduced all but essential activity” in its UK Civil Aerospace facilities.

The measures have been put in place for a week and staff will continue to be paid. A statement from Rolls-Royce read: “Our priority since the start of the Covid-19 outbreak has been to ensure the wellbeing of all our employees.”

“We have been actively implementing government guidelines throughout our global facilities, particularly those relating to social distancing, including in the UK where our manufacturing sites have to date remained fully operational.

The delay will enable the engine manufacturer to “confirm the effectiveness of the measures taken to date and enhance our processes in order to sustain modified operations and activities over a longer period”.

Rolls-Royce will also turn its focus to supporting customers and vital services, including air freight operations, during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Ventilator consortium led by Meggitt receives 10,000 orders

A consortium of engineering companies which includes Meggitt has received formal orders from the government to produce in excess of 10,000 ventilator units.

The Ventilator Challenge UK Consortium is led by Dick Elsy, CEO of High Value Manufacturing Catapult, a group of manufacturing research centres in the UK.

The consortium has been investigating production of a range of ventilator design options over the past week to meet a high-level specification for a Rapidly Manufactured Ventilator System (RMVS) developed by clinicians and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency.

The consortium has evaluated all requirements to design, manufacture, assemble and test components, as well as finished medical ventilators. Companies in the consortium have now received formal orders from the Government in excess of 10,000 units.

The consortium will now accelerate production of an agreed new design, based on existing technologies, which can be assembled from materials and parts in current production. The device combines existing proven clinical equipment and is the clinicians’ first choice for the RMVS. The regulator has been involved throughout and we anticipate a straightforward and very prompt regulatory sign off after the final audit.