On January 28th, 201 American diplomat’s, and contracts were evacuated from Wuhan China after an outbreak of the Corona Virus. The US chartered Kalitta Air, a 14 CFR 121 all cargo airlines to fly these passengers. Now here’s the question, how do you fly 201 people on a cargo jet?
Kalitta Airlines is a part of the Civil Reserve Air Fleet under the Air Mobility Command or AMC. CRAF is a group of airlines that support DoD and the US during time of emergencies. Almost every airlines is a part of this group, Kalitta along with 15 other airlines are consider “Long Range International” groups.
The last time CRAF was activated was during Operation Iraqi Freedom when Kalitta, and other cargo airlines flew weapons, vehicles ect for the US.
The State department contacted Kalitta to move people out of Wuhan back to the US with a stop in Anchorage, finally ending up at March Reserve Base, California. Here is the route of flight.
So how did a Cargo airlines become a passenger jet?!
The company installed pallet seats for the passengers, during the time of its arrival into Wuhan the crew did not leave the cockpit and the door was secured while passengers traveled inside the cargo hold. The 747 flew at a flight level of 270 when it arrived into Anchorage during the flight over the medical team onboard checked everyone twice to make sure no one was showing signs of the Corona Virus, when they arrived into Anchorage the passengers deboarded the plane to clear US Customs and once again get checked twice. Kalitta departed at 2am for March RAFB where the aircraft arrived. Everyone is being watched for three days if they are clear of the virus they will be able to return home, as for N705CK a friend of mine says it will be cleaned before heading back into service.