Chemical-based cleaning measures necessitate the manual application of strong chemical disinfectants. These programmes increase labour costs and prolong turnaround times for aircraft. Unfortunately, reports are now emerging that document additional side-effects of such cleaning regimes, which include the creation of surplus hazardous waste and health complaints from staff and crew exposed to such harsh and noxious formulas.
Further to environmental and health concerns posed by the frequent use of chemical disinfectants onboard, the compounds commonly found in them carry the added risk of interior corrosion, embrittlement, increased flammability, and even electrical short circuit. “Depending on the system or part affected, any of these conditions could create either an immediate or latent airworthiness issue.”, warns a Special Airworthiness Bulletin published by the FAA in November 2020.