The threat of a potentially deadly outbreak of monkeypox forced a Delta flight into quarantine for over two hours Thursday afternoon at Chicago’s Midway International Airport. Just as Flight 3163 from Detroit was landing at the south side airport, emergency crews swarmed the tarmac to respond to suspicious symptoms exhibited by one of the passengers.
Monkeypox is a rare viral disease that is usually fatal. The first and only U.S. outbreak of the disease was back in 2003.
Fortunately, federal health administrators made the determination that the passengers on the flight posed little threat to public health and ultimately lifted the quarantine.
The CDC made a statement on their decision: “Based on the patient’s symptoms and photographs of the rash, it does not appear that the signs and symptoms are consistent with a monkeypox infection.”
Passengers later concluded that the suspicious rash was the result of bug bites.