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Flight attendant diagnosed with coronavirus might have serviced trips between Seoul and Los Angeles

Korean Air's Airbus A380 is configured to seat 407 passengers in three classes, making it the lowest capacity commercial A380. By contrast, Air France can fit up to 538 passengers. Qantas has the second fewest seats with 450.
(Jason La / Los Angeles Times)

A South Korean flight attendant who has been diagnosed with the novel coronavirus may have serviced trips between Seoul and Los Angeles last week, according to several South Korean media outlets.

South Korea’s Center for Disease Control said Wednesday local time that a female flight attendant who serviced a flight Feb. 15 from Tel Aviv to Seoul had tested positive for the virus. On board the flight was a church group returning from a pilgrimage to Israel; 30 other infections have been connected to the group so far, according to local authorities.

The South Korean media outlets reported that the same flight attendant had serviced flights KE017 and KE012 on Feb. 19 and 20 to and from Los Angeles International.

Neither Korean Air nor local officials immediately confirmed the reports — Korean Air announced it was closing its operations center at Incheon Airport to disinfect the premises.

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South Korea has reported more than 1,100 confirmed cases of the coronavirus so far, the largest outbreak outside of China, as infections have sprung up in at least 40 countries across the globe.

Times staff writer Jaclyn Cosgrove in Los Angeles contributed to this report.


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