Coronavirus: Rome to shut Ciampino airport, close terminal at Fiumicino

Passengers with protective face masks are pictured at Fiumicino airport in Rome, on March 12, 2020. PHOTO: REUTERS

ROME (AFP) - Rome's Ciampino airport will shut to passenger flights from Friday (March 13), authorities said, with a terminal also closing at the city's main Fiumicino facility next week as airlines slash flights to Italy over the coronavirus outbreak.

Ciampino will close to passengers at midnight Friday, a spokesman for the ADR company that runs both airports told AFP, with Terminal 1 at Fiumicino closing on Tuesday.

Cargo flights will still be able to use Ciampino, a statement from ADR said.

"The decision has been made necessary by the numerous cancellations of flights to and from Italy announced by many airline companies," the statement went on.

Ciampino is the smaller of the two facilities and is popular with low-cost operators.

ADR did not give a date for when the measures would be lifted, saying only that the airports "will return to normal operations as soon as the current period of emergency has been overcome".

As part of a raft of measures aimed at containing Europe's worst coronavirus outbreak, the Italian government has said only essential travel is permitted.

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