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How Often Does This Happen?  
User currently offlineJeff714 From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 9 posts, RR: 0
Posted (14 years 4 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 2232 times:

This is my first post here. Seems like a nice place.

Today in the LA Times, there was an article about an American Airlines 777 enroute from LAX to London when the pilot suffered a heart attack near Los Vegas.

The pilot was incoherent but an intercom call resulted in both a MD and nurse coming forward and administering nitro, aspirin and oxygen resulting in an immediate improvement in his condition. The plane landed in Las Vegas without incidence and the pilot is doing OK.

How common is it for a member of the cockpit crew to be suddenly and totally incapitated? I seem to recall that last year or so that a Northwest DC-10 flight from Dallas to Chicago had a similar situation but sadly, that pilot passed away in flight.

5 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineFlagshipAZ From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 3419 posts, RR: 13
Reply 1, posted (14 years 4 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 2186 times:

Let me be the first to welcome you aboard.  Wink/being sarcastic Yes, this is a pretty classy place, altho we're not perfect. To answer your question...no, it does not happen often at all. Altho when it does, it's always "front page" news.
That's why there will always be at least two peeple in the cockpit at all times. Personally, I would not fly on a commercial airline until the mandatory two-pilot flight crew is met. Hope you'll enjoy our company here.  Wink/being sarcastic Regards.

"Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy." --Ben Franklin
User currently offlineAstrojet From Germany, joined Aug 2000, 565 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (14 years 4 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 2160 times:

About 5 or 6 years ago I was waiting at the airport for a friend coming with LTU from DUS to IBZ and the flight was pretty delayed because about half of the flight one pilot suffered something close to a heart attack and they turned into DUS to let him down and get a new pilot, and then they started again to IBZ.

User currently offlineContinental From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 5557 posts, RR: 16
Reply 3, posted (14 years 4 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 2152 times:

The NWA DC-10 pilot who suffered a heart attack in flight and died was flying LAX-MSP. It was his last flight, and he was dragged into the lavoratory. The co-pilot was givin an oxygen mask, to ensure that he nothing happens to him. They landed at MSP safely.

Continental (MSP)

User currently offlineJeff714 From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 9 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (14 years 4 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 2109 times:

Thanks for the quick replies. I thought it was a very rare occurence; I just didn't know how limited.

I don't even begin to profess to have half the knowlege that I'm reading in other posts so please forgive what might otherwise be a stupid question.

On long flights such as LAX to LHR, wouldn't there be a "relief crew" so that another captain would take over? If so, does this mean that the FO always stays in the right seat or do they "rotate" e.g., moving from the right seat to the left. If I'm mistaken, what is the relief proceedure.

User currently offlineAC_A340 From Canada, joined Sep 1999, 2251 posts, RR: 1
Reply 5, posted (14 years 4 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 2103 times:

Usually on a relief crew, the current Pilot and co-pilot leave and the new pilot and co-pilot come up.

They don't switch from the right to left very often. Usually because the guy/girl in the right seat is a First Officer, not a pilot. Yet they are fully capable of flying the plane.

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