Health officials warn passengers on some Southwest flights of possible measles exposure

U.S. & World

Air travel is frustrating enough with long security lines, cramped seating and expensive baggage fees, but health officials are now warning passengers who were on some Southwest flights that they may have been exposed to a highly contagious disease.

According to KTRK, officials from multiple jurisdictions are contacting passengers who were on at least four Southwest Airlines flights in and out of Houston Hobby on Aug. 21 and Aug. 22 that they may have been exposed to measles.  The Houston Health Department said one passenger from North Texas tested positive for the disease while traveling on four different flights, but he or she never left the waiting area before boarding the flights.

“That’s why our focus is on directly contacting the passengers to notify them of the risks, inquire about their vaccination status, and make sure they monitor for symptoms and seek medical attention if necessary,” Dr. David Persse with the Houston Health Department  told KTRK.

Measles symptoms include rash, high fever, coughing, runny nose, and red and watery eyes. Health department officials say passengers could present symptoms as late as Sept. 12 and should contact a doctor immediately if they experience any symptoms.

The flights the infected passenger was on include:

  • Flight No. 5 between Dallas and Houston on Aug. 21
  • Flight No. 9 between Houston and Harlingen on Aug. 21.
  • Flight No. 66 between Harlingen and Houston on Aug. 22
  • Flight No. 44 between Houston and Dallas on Aug. 22

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