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Pilot Draws Giant Syringe In The Sky To Celebrate COVID-19 Vaccine Arrival


Katy Evans

Katy is Managing Editor at IFLScience where she oversees editorial content from News articles to Features, and even occasionally writes some.

Managing Editor


A German pilot had some fun drawing a giant syringe in the sky to celebrate the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine in Europe. Flightradar24

When promising vaccines for COVID-19 started to become a reality, many people wanted to celebrate and shout it from the rooftops. A pilot in southern Germany did one better and showed his appreciation 1,500 meters (5,000 feet) in the air. Using a flight tracker, the pilot drew a 70-kilometer (43 mile) long syringe in the sky with his plane.

According to AFP, the amateur pilot, 20-year-old Samy Kramer, carefully plotted his route above Baden-Wuerttemberg, southwest Germany, just before Christmas to celebrate the start of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout in Germany and the rest of Europe.


"I wanted to give people food for thought for the day the vaccine became available," Kramer told AFP. The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine was officially rolled out on Sunday, December 27, but a day earlier a 101-year-old care home resident became the first person in Germany to receive a jab.  

Using a Diamond DA-20 Katana, Kramer took to the skies for a flight that lasted just over 1 hour 40 minutes and covered around 280 kilometers (170 miles), taking in some 90-degree turns to create his depiction, all captured by Flightradar24, a live flight tracker.


The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine was the first to be authorized for use in Europe and the US, with the Moderna vaccine hot on its heels in the US and Canada, arriving in Europe in early 2021. 

Around 65 percent of Germans have said they will have the vaccine when it is available, similar to the UK at 67 percent, according to a recent YouGov poll. In the US, confidence in a vaccine has risen recently to 60 percent of adults saying they will have the jab, up from 51 percent in September according to a national survey by Pew Research


Kramer wasn't the only one to use the skies as a canvas for their pandemic messages this year, according to Flightradar24.  

One pilot flying over Burgenland in Austria spelled out the message '"STAY HOME," another drew a giant thumbs up above Szekszárd in Hungary, and a third spelled out "NHS" for the UK's National Health Service, above Berkshire in south-east England. This latest one celebrates the phenomenal achievement of scientists working together around the world in incredible circumstances during an incredible year. 



For more information about Covid-19, check out the IFLScience Covid-19 hub where you can follow the current state of the pandemic, the progress of vaccine development, and further insights into the disease.


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