Singapore Airlines (SIA) delivered the first shipment of Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccines to Singapore earlier this evening on board one of its Boeing 747-400 freighters registered 9V-SFM. This was also the first Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine shipment to be delivered to a country in Asia.
The vaccines were carried on board SQ7979, a scheduled freighter service from Brussels, Belgium, to Singapore. The flight departed on 20 December 2020 at 21:25 and arrived in Singapore on 21 December 2020 at 19:55 after an intermediary stop in Sharjah (UAE).
The shipment was prioritised for loading into the aircraft in Brussels and was given similar precedence during unloading in Singapore. It was then transported to SATS’s cold-chain facility, Coolport, for subsequent storage and ground transportation.
Prior to today’s delivery flight, SIA conducted a successful shipment trial on 19 December 2020 on the same freighter flight route. Besides ensuring the smooth and safe delivery of the thermal shippers, also known as the cool boxes, used for the trial, the internal temperature of each box was actively tracked on an end-to-end basis. The sublimation rate of the dry ice in the cool boxes was also measured.
Mr Chin Yau Seng, Senior Vice President Cargo, SIA, said: “The delivery of this first batch of Covid-19 vaccines to Singapore is an important milestone in the fight against Covid-19, and we are honoured to be able to play a part in this. It also served to demonstrate SIA’s and the Singapore air hub’s readiness for the very important job of transporting and distributing Covid-19 vaccines internationally.”