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A Mountain of Face Coverings Helps Protect our Region

Update on the Port's COVID-19 response Learn more.

June 30, 2020

COVID-19 has changed the world seemingly overnight and has impacted nearly every industry, but particularly the aviation industry. Even with the decline in passenger traffic this year, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) remains a critical transportation hub and continues to operate and bring supplies and products in and out of the region and as a critical component of the national emergency response.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) provided 2.6 million face coverings to protect essential workers at Washington airports like SEA and other regional airports including Spokane, Bellingham, Pasco, Walla Walla, Pullman, and Bremerton.

Unloading the Boxes

A mountain of face coverings

Wait, did you say 2,600,000 face coverings? Yes, that's right and it's hard to envision. 

To put 2.6 million masks into perspective:

  • That's one mask for almost everyone in Chicago, Illinois
  • Or if you stacked the 5,150 boxes of masks on top of each other it would be 11,590 feet tall. That's taller than Mt. Hood! 

Mountain of Masks

The masks will protect essential workers like: 

  • Baggage Handlers
  • Air cargo workers
  • Airport employees 
  • Airport security
  • Custodians

The masks will also be distributed to the ecosystem of partner companies that are supported by the airport, including workers you wouldn't typically think of like:

  • Rental car employees
  • Rideshare drivers (think Uber/Lyft drivers)
  • Hotel and airport shuttle drivers
  • Baristas, bartenders, and buskers at the airport
  • Construction workers
  •  And many more

Help comes from ports and airports

The mask distribution highlights the diversity of jobs that are tied to airports and shows how critical aviation is to the regional economy. COVID-19 has shown how airports and ports are critical to the people of a region, for when we need help it comes in by ships and planes and we're always here to do our part.

Man unloading boxes


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