AirBridgeCargo Airlines (ABC) partnered with Kuehne+Nagel to operate a pharma charter flight from Leipzig, Germany (LEJ) to Guangzhou, China (CAN) via Novosibirsk, Russia (OVB).
Over 500,000 vials of temperature-sensitive human albumin were packaged in Tyvek thermo covers and transported in 19 ULDs loaded onto a Boeing 747-8F.
More than 105 tonnes were carried by ABC’s freighter.
“With most of the anti-COVID-19 shipments switching to slow logistics, we could use this period to test our capabilities for vaccine transportation,” explained said Nikolay Glushnev, general director at ABC.
“Although we have not used special containers for this particular charter flight, it is still essential to guarantee that all the stakeholders are ready for a considerable batch of pharma shipments,” he noted.
Kuehne+Nagel said it has assessed the impact of the upcoming Covid-19 vaccine demand and are ramping-up capabilities to address arising requirements of additional capacity, dedicated resources, quality and compliance, and infrastructure.
“Regular exchange on current and future capabilities, as well as the successful execution of temperature-sensitive shipments with AirBridgeCargo Airlines, confirms that jointly we will ensure fast, safe and secure transportation of vaccines and supporting materials (e.g., syringes) to the world,” said Jon Chapman, vice president of pharma & healthcare services at Kuehne+Nagel.
AirBridgeCargo and other carriers within Volga-Dnepr Group offer a “clean charter” service. This includes disinfection of cargo and cabin compartments, as well as providing PPE, regular COVID-19 testing and medical checks for the crew. Special “clean corridors” in the airports will also be used to make way for cargo.