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Passenger aircraft are being tested to fly critical cargo

Alaska Air Cargo tests loading freight into the passenger cabin of an Alaska Airlines 737-900...
Alaska Air Cargo tests loading freight into the passenger cabin of an Alaska Airlines 737-900 in Seattle. Alaska will be utilizing passenger jets as freighter only aircraft to maximize critical cargo shipments of essential goods.(KTUU)
Published: Apr. 29, 2020 at 7:37 AM AKDT
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Alaska Air Cargo says it will fly passenger jets as cargo-only flights to carry essential goods like mail, medical equipment, e-commerce packages, and food.

"We're determined to help protect the resiliency of our nation's supply chain by connecting critical cargo to the communities we serve during this public health crisis," said Torque Zubeck, managing director of Alaska Air Cargo. "Our teams have been working tirelessly since March to identify the safest and most effective processes to increase our cargo capacity as quickly as possible."

Alaska Air Cargo currently has three freighters, and according to a press release, it will add six Boeing 737-900 aircraft to its fleet to be used as cargo-only aircraft.

Alaska Air Cargo says around 60% of its cargo business touches the state of Alaska in some way. It serves 19 stations with only three connected by road. Plus, annually it flys over 200 million pounds of cargo.

If approved by the FAA, the passenger-only aircraft would begin flying throughout the United States in May.

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