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Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate  
User currently offlinedaver3188 From United States of America, joined Jan 2011, 15 posts, RR: 0
Posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 14610 times:

I was wondering if this is odd or a normal thing.

Becuase I was going from ATL - FRA and we were delayed for over 2 hours because a passenger on the flight before passed away. They told us this over the PA system, but when the plane arrived at our gate nobody got off the plane. And within a half hour we were boarding a completely empty plane.

I was just wondering if this was standard procedure that the passengers got off at a different gate, or were bused to the terminal.

22 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlinerrobards2 From United States of America, joined Aug 2010, 16 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 14554 times:

Do you know where the plane came in from? I've seen it many times before planes coming in from other international destinations at one terminal for everyone to deplane but then brought to another gate/terminal to board everyone for the next flight.

for example, at EWR a lot of UAs international flights arrive at terminal B but no UA flights leave from terminal B, so after everyone deplanes and it's gone through security checks, it is brought over to terminal C to be catered and boarded for it's next flight


User currently offlinejpetekyxmd80 From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 4391 posts, RR: 26
Reply 2, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 14554 times:

Seems the aircraft was being brought from another gate or a remote parking location.


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User currently offlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 31394 posts, RR: 85
Reply 3, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 14518 times:
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UA does the same at SEA. The in-bound from NRT arrives at the South Satellite because that is where C&I is. Once unloaded, it's towed over to the North Terminal for boarding on the outbound.

User currently offlinebrilondon From Canada, joined Aug 2005, 4414 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 14458 times:

Quoting Stitch (Reply 3):
UA does the same at SEA. The in-bound from NRT arrives at the South Satellite because that is where C&I is. Once unloaded, it's towed over to the North Terminal for boarding on the outbound.

ORD is similar. All the international arrivals arrive at T5, and if you are flying on any of the airlines that generally use T1,3 or 4, you get an empty plane.



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User currently offlinewjcandee From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 5330 posts, RR: 23
Reply 5, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 14258 times:

It's also possible that in the half-hour that the plane was at the gate, they were unloading the body while everyone else waited. Remember that the person is usually pronounced dead in the jetway, for a variety of reasons. They could have asked pax to wait while they attended to that.

OTOH, there is nothing to indicate that the plane that came into your gate was indeed the aircraft that had the incident aboard. Could have been the next aircraft scheduled to depart from that gate (you were delayed 2 hours after all), which could have received several hours of cleaning and service elsewhere and towed to the gate from maint. Heck, you were at ATL, which is a maintenance base, so DL's practice (and the rules) would require a variety of things to be fixed as aircraft pass through ATL.


User currently offlineNWADTWE16 From United States of America, joined Jun 2012, 242 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 14165 times:

Old DTW Northwest ops were the same way as Customs was in terminal I and the Europe and ASia flights departed from F concourse...

User currently offlineblueflyer From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 4178 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 13978 times:
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Quoting wjcandee (Reply 5):
Heck, you were at ATL, which is a maintenance base, so DL's practice (and the rules) would require a variety of things to be fixed as aircraft pass through ATL.

Yeah, but OP didn't say whether he was flying LH or DL either.

If it was LH, it is quite likely they had the plane parked at a stand to attract less curiosity while the authorities did their duties and the plane got a more thorough cleaning than usual.

If it was DL, it could be just the same, or it could be that the plane originally intended for the flight was delayed further due to the death on board and another aircraft had to be brought in and prepped for the flight at the last minute.



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User currently offlineFlyingSicilian From Italy, joined Mar 2009, 1392 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 13898 times:

I haven't flown int'l out of ATL in some time so forgive me if this is common knowledge but is the arriving jetway exit visit form the gate? For example at IAH a plane can arrive from overseas and the pax exit the jetway and often go up an escalator right next to the gate to keep the non-cleared arriving pax "sterile". Could the OP see the arriving pax? i am not sure how ATL is set up. I've had similar arrivals at EWR C where we landing at normal gate and were segregated into CBP.


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User currently offlinePHX787 From Japan, joined Mar 2012, 7959 posts, RR: 19
Reply 9, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 13836 times:

Quoting Stitch (Reply 3):
UA does the same at SEA. The in-bound from NRT arrives at the South Satellite because that is where C&I is. Once unloaded, it's towed over to the North Terminal for boarding on the outbound.

LH same procedure at SEA. Saw it done and it was pretty fascinating seeing it towed to the other side.



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User currently offlineFlyer732 From Namibia, joined Nov 1999, 1368 posts, RR: 21
Reply 10, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 13058 times:

If you were flying ATL-FRA, you were at an international gate, the plane likely arrived from an international city, and thus the passengers went from the aircraft straight to customs/immigration rather than into the terminal.

User currently offlineKPWMSpotter From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 457 posts, RR: 2
Reply 11, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 12869 times:

ATL does not require aircraft repositioning for international flights - all airlines which fly internationally from ATL board and deplane from terminals E and F.

There is likely a connection between the death onboard and the late/empty aircraft. If there was any biohazard issue onboard the plane may have been towed to a remote area to be cleaned and sanitized. The aircraft may have been swapped with a spare if there were lingering sanitation or legal issues. I don't have any answers for sure, but I'm betting that the aircraft deplaned as usual before being towed away to be cleaned elsewhere on the airport.



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User currently offlinePHX787 From Japan, joined Mar 2012, 7959 posts, RR: 19
Reply 12, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 12559 times:

Quoting KPWMSpotter (Reply 11):
ATL does not require aircraft repositioning for international flights - all airlines which fly internationally from ATL board and deplane from terminals E and F.

Let me throw something at you....the 77L to LAX that continues to SYD....does that board and deplane at E and F even though everyone went through customs, etc, at LAX?



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User currently offlinexjramper From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 2473 posts, RR: 51
Reply 13, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 12336 times:

PHX...yes. THose are the only two concourses that can handle the 777.

For those who are wondering about the ATL arrival set up (can only speak for the E gates, haven't gone through the F concourse yet), there are two doors. One that arrives into the actual concourse and one that leads to the escalator that takes you up to the immigration hall. If its arriving from anywhere except the US, the door to the concourse stays closed and the door to the escalator stays open. Once deplaning has completed there is a grill at the top of the escalator that gets closed and the doorway gate level that gets closed and once the aircraft is cleared into service, they can reopen the concourse door and start boarding that way. You will never even see inbound intl passengers in ATL.



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User currently offlineseabosdca From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 5834 posts, RR: 6
Reply 14, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 12080 times:

Quoting xjramper (Reply 13):
there are two doors. One that arrives into the actual concourse and one that leads to the escalator that takes you up to the immigration hall. If its arriving from anywhere except the US, the door to the concourse stays closed and the door to the escalator stays open. Once deplaning has completed there is a grill at the top of the escalator that gets closed and the doorway gate level that gets closed and once the aircraft is cleared into service, they can reopen the concourse door and start boarding that way. You will never even see inbound intl passengers in ATL.

This is how it works for international arrivals in most large U.S. airports.


User currently offlineDLD9S From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 261 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 11920 times:

Quoting Flyer732 (Reply 10):
If you were flying ATL-FRA, you were at an international gate, the plane likely arrived from an international city, and thus the passengers went from the aircraft straight to customs/immigration rather than into the terminal.

I was thinking that too, but...

Quoting daver3188 (Thread starter):
the plane arrived at our gate nobody got off the plane. And within a half hour we were boarding a completely empty plane.

I don't think 30 minutes would be enough time to empty pax and luggage and clean and cater for another long haul, especially if they had to take the time to declare a pax dead.

Chances are a new plane was subbed, or the plane had to visit another part of the airport between flights for some reason - maybe related to the death on board.



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User currently offlinewjcandee From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 5330 posts, RR: 23
Reply 16, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 10136 times:

I apologize for misreading the post. I thought he meant that he boarded a *different* plane adjacent to the one that came in from which he saw no passengers deplaining. The answers given are correct. Either the pax deplaned through a different route, which they would do in ATL, and he just didn't see them, or the aircraft was deplaned and cleaned elsewhere before he boarded, or the aircraft that taxied to the gate was a sub.

User currently offlineFlyASAGuy2005 From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 7004 posts, RR: 7
Reply 17, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 10026 times:

Quoting xjramper (Reply 13):
PHX...yes. THose are the only two concourses that can handle the 777.

Nope. Prior to F opening this spring, the 77L that went to LAX and continued to SYD departed from T02 at least 4 times a week. T02 is marked up to a 744.



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User currently offlinePHX787 From Japan, joined Mar 2012, 7959 posts, RR: 19
Reply 18, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 9872 times:

Quoting FlyASAGuy2005 (Reply 17):
Nope. Prior to F opening this spring, the 77L that went to LAX and continued to SYD departed from T02 at least 4 times a week. T02 is marked up to a 744.

Yeah I coulda sworn once I saw a 777 parked over at the T gates in ATL.



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User currently offlineFlyASAGuy2005 From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 7004 posts, RR: 7
Reply 19, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 9750 times:

Quoting PHX787 (Reply 18):

Yeah I coulda sworn once I saw a 777 parked over at the T gates in ATL.

It was a near daily thing for almost a year until F opened. Every gate on T can park at least a 764 except T08 (up to a 753). T02 can park up to a 744. T03 can park up to a Tripple 7/330. When a 777 is on T02, T01 is restricted to 737s and 32Ss. If a 777/330 is on T03, T02 is restricted to 767s or smaller.



What gets measured gets done.
User currently offlineaklrno From United States of America, joined Dec 2010, 987 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (2 years 4 months 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 9089 times:

I once arrived at LAX on an NZ flight where someone died across the plane from me. Although we were warned that there might be a delay, we were allowed off immediately. Police and coroner personnel were in the jet way as we walked by. They seemed to not be in much of a hurry. A doctor on board had already looked at him. It might be different if foul play was suspected or if there was a chance he was still alive, but that guy died in mid-Pacific.

No one in the terminal sees you arriving at T-2 at LAX, or the current TBIT. You travel in separate opaque walled hallways. It's that way in most big airports I can think of.

At the new TBIT the arriving passengers will walk above the departing passengers in glass corridors. They are also visible to some extent at AKL.


User currently offlineJONC777 From United States of America, joined Jun 2012, 126 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (2 years 4 months 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 7160 times:

Quoting KPWMSpotter (Reply 11):

FL regurlarly uses C gates for international departures and pre screened arrivals can go anywhere. . .I am often walking through ATL to see a screen above the plane train enterance directing customers to pick up international bags at the international terminal. This is in just about every terminal. . .


User currently offlinedaver3188 From United States of America, joined Jan 2011, 15 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (2 years 4 months 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 4324 times:

Thank you everybody for your knowledge. It was the first time I ever flew internationally so I was very unaware of the circumstances.

It was Lufthansa A330.


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