Non-stop cleaning for planes to maneuver safely



The maneuvering area of ​​the Manises airport (Valencia) – where the planes park and access the runways – continues to be cleaned so that flights such as those arriving from China with medical equipment are not found with stones or metal particles that could endanger to aircraft.

The person responsible for doing this is Gestaser, a company that is also in charge of cleaning the sheet of water in the port of Alicante, the Villena waste plant, the Bank of Spain branch in Alicante or the headquarters of the Local Police. de Onil, as well as the disinfection of pharmacies and agri-food companies.

“We do some basic minimum services so that the areas where the planes park and maneuver are functional and there are no problems,” explains the director of Gestaser Services, Pedro Martínez López, who specifies that Aena has reduced the file and now they are providing the service “approximately 30%”.

Until the coronavirus crisis began, three people were responsible, from Monday to Sunday, 365 days a year, to clean the parking platforms of the planes and the roads to access these areas, which are used by the services ground assistance, such as those who supply fuel and food or those who transport suitcases.

Now that the flights “have dropped between 90 and 95%”, this service is carried out by a person, from Monday to Friday from 8 am to 2 pm, who is responsible for passing a sweeper that, in addition to brushes, includes a magnet that Vacuum metal particles to prevent them from puncturing an airplane wheel or entering turbines.

Martínez highlights the change that has meant moving from working in an airport that until now had moved 7 million travelers to one “quite soulless”, although he claims the usefulness of this service because, although very few, flights continue to arrive, including chartered by the Valencian Government in China.

The director of Gestaser Services points out that there is an agreement with Aena so that, as flight traffic in Manises increases, it will return to normal in the cleaning of the so-called “air side” of Manises airport, from which they have been in charge since 2015.

Also since that year they are responsible for cleaning the sheet of water in the port of Alicante, where five days a week they go out with a boat to collect floating and semi-floating waste and have had to make changes for safety, such as reducing two one to the skippers on board the boat.

In these days when there are “much less people” along the promenade, “the dirt that is collected is no longer papers that do not deposit well in the bins and end up in the sea, but wefts of algae and objects that can make navigation difficult “, Explain.

Martínez points out that in all the cleaning services provided by this company based in Villena (Alicante) and working in Alicante, Valencia, Murcia, Albacete and Seville, they have introduced organizational changes and staggering of shifts in order to continue with their activity, respecting the measures of security.

Thus, for example, if they used to clean schools or sports centers, now that they are closed they have negotiated with the municipalities to clean and disinfect with backpacks on the streets the accesses to establishments that remain open, such as pharmacies, shops or banks.

They have also increased the frequency of cleaning shifts in places such as the Onil Local Police headquarters (Alicante), where they have also started cleaning cars; or in agri-food factories, where toilets, changing rooms or dining rooms have been cleaned up to four times a day and disinfection has been added.

In the case of the Villena waste plant, in addition to distance protocols and protective equipment, it has gone from entering at five in the afternoon to doing so at ten at night, so as not to overlap with the shifts of production.

“We have sought to relocate all the people so that they continue having work at a time when cleaning is essential to fight against COVID-19, since we are more useful working,” says Martínez, who adds that, of the 80 people who He is in charge, only the two that have been reduced in Manises have had to go to the temporary employment regulation file (ERTE).

Loli Benlloch

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