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Is Working As A Pilot Bad For Your Health?  
User currently offlinegrimey From Ireland, joined Jun 2005, 456 posts, RR: 5
Posted (2 years 2 months 4 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 12174 times:

The BBC has recently put up an article stating that shift work is linked to increased risk of heart problems, this got me thinking that pilots and flight attendants do lot of shift work but their working hours are irregular due to flying over different time zones which in effect causes jet lag and might interrupt their sleeping patterns for a couple of days afterwards.

We all know that a few crashes have happened over the years due to the flight crew being jet lagged or exhausted but what I'm wondering is the career choice of a pilot one that effects health in a major way, any pilots out there feel that after 20-30 years of flying that they are now suffering from bad health or heart attacks.

Breathing in re-circulated air and eating airline food or fast food at airports on a constant basis is not good for anyone but anyone can experience these conditions working long hours in an office in a city. Although on the other hand I'm wondering if the life of a pilot can be just as healthy as any other career as you can get a number of days off between flights, you can only fly 900 hours a year so there should be some amount of time you can spend by yourself and maybe starting earlier in the morning avoids traffic jams therefore bringing on less stress.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-18996082

60 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offline26point2 From United States of America, joined Mar 2010, 837 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (2 years 2 months 4 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 12140 times:

I am a pilot. 48 years old...35 years of it flying, so I think I'm qualified to answer?

First...don't believe the BBC or FOX news. Believe your peers...some of them at least.

One thing I'm sure of...irregardless of one's choice of career it really amounts to one's choice of lifestyle that makes the difference.

Pilots spend a lot of down time at work, corporate pilots even more, and one has to find a positive way to spend that time. Room service meals and Internet porn is fun in moderation but we should all have our healthy habits too.

I spend my downtime running or riding the bike I carry in the GLEX engine room. Every day a new adventure. Tomorrow's plan: 120 miles on the bicycle on a Pacific island.....and I'm at work.

Not all Americans are obese....or lazy.

26.2

[Edited 2012-07-28 23:20:07]

User currently offlineboeing773ER From United States of America, joined Dec 2011, 435 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (2 years 2 months 4 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 12094 times:

Quoting 26point2 (Reply 1):
48 years old...35 years of it flying

I don't want to take this the wrong way, but have you been a pilot for 35 years or have you generally been flying for 35 years? Because if you have been a pilot for 35 years, and you are 48 years old you must of started when you were 13?

But, in other regards, of course they have found another thing that is "bad for your health"

The media/hospitals/research faculties find everything you do in the modern world "bad for your health." Soon doing anything besides sleeping and eating all organic food is going to be "bad for your health"

I can imagine being a pilot is as bad as any 9-5 desk job, you are breathing the air of other people, you may eat out everyday for lunch, and just sitting around in a chair for most of your day.



Work Hard, Fly Right.
User currently offline26point2 From United States of America, joined Mar 2010, 837 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (2 years 2 months 4 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 12056 times:

Yes. I started flying at 13 years old. PPL not 'til 17 though. ATP at 26, etc. It's really not relevant to the topic though.

User currently offlineMEA-707 From Netherlands, joined Nov 1999, 4342 posts, RR: 35
Reply 4, posted (2 years 2 months 4 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 12027 times:

I read that almost all female Concorde pilots died of cancer, there might be a link between UV radiation risk in higher altitudes and breast cancer.


nobody has ever died from hard work, but why take the risk?
User currently offlineBellerophon From United Kingdom, joined May 2002, 584 posts, RR: 59
Reply 5, posted (2 years 2 months 4 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 11874 times:

MEA-707

Quote:
...I read that almost all female Concorde pilots died of cancer...

I hope you didn't believe it!

To the best of my knowledge, one half of all the female pilots ever licensed on Concorde is still alive and well - very sadly the other half passed away last year.

Best Regards

Bellerophon


User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17068 posts, RR: 66
Reply 6, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 11813 times:

Quoting 26point2 (Reply 1):
One thing I'm sure of...irregardless of one's choice of career it really amounts to one's choice of lifestyle that makes the difference.

Pilots spend a lot of down time at work, corporate pilots even more, and one has to find a positive way to spend that time. Room service meals and Internet porn is fun in moderation but we should all have our healthy habits too.

I spend my downtime running or riding the bike I carry in the GLEX engine room. Every day a new adventure. Tomorrow's plan: 120 miles on the bicycle on a Pacific island.....and I'm at work.

Not all Americans are obese....or lazy.

I think this says it all.

Most professions have bad aspects. My wife routinely works 12-15 hours a day, sometimes 18-20. Bad for you, perhaps, but that is what she chooses to do. She goes into it with an open mind. Few pilots are forced to become pilots. Long haul pilots may have screwed up circadian rhythms but would they rather be working 8-6 flying a desk? I doubt it.

As 26point2 says, you can be healthy or unhealthy. The one thing you cannot do is blame your chosen profession for your resultant lifestyle. That choice is yours. I know a few pilots. Some need to exercise. Others are in great shape. Like in any other job.



"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineLH707330 From United States of America, joined Jun 2012, 810 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 11804 times:

Quoting Bellerophon (Reply 5):
To the best of my knowledge, one half of all the female pilots ever licensed on Concorde is still alive and well - very sadly the other half passed away last year.

What's the total count?


User currently offlineCosmicCruiser From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 2255 posts, RR: 15
Reply 8, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 11766 times:

26point2 is correct about how you choose to live your life and I'm right there with him. I'm fast approaching the end with 30 yrs at one airline and 12 more commercial years before that and can say I try to eat right and get lots of exercise and so far have had no job related problems short of a couple of food related issues, stomach viruses and one car wreck going to the airport. However I will qualify that with the observation that a constant dose of int'l flying 12-15 days a month does stress your body with constant disruption to all the body systems and I do believe it may have some affect over the years. Of course sitting in an office 8-5 daily adds a lot of stress in other ways as well. I'll take the flying job.

User currently offlinebond007 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 5428 posts, RR: 8
Reply 9, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 11734 times:

Quoting CosmicCruiser (Reply 8):
Of course sitting in an office 8-5 daily adds a lot of stress in other ways as well.

Also, there are lot of folks working 10, 12, 16 hours in the office, every day including weekends. They don't have the 'luxury' of downtime, although in most cases it's also their choice, as mentioned.

Now, statistically (fatality rate per 100,000 workers), overall, being a pilot is one of the '10 most dangerous jobs' in the USA. Presumably this because it also includes Part 91 and Part 135 ops, but the numbers are still very small, and is attributed to crashes.

Quoting MEA-707 (Reply 4):
I read that almost all female Concorde pilots died of cance
Quoting Bellerophon (Reply 5):
To the best of my knowledge, one half of all the female pilots ever licensed on Concorde is still alive and well - very sadly the other half passed away last year.

Yes, so you could argue that 'almost all' was a valid statement ... all but one  

Bear in mind anybody's chance of dying of cancer is around 1 in 3.

Jimbo



I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was in the air, than in the air wishing I was on the ground!
User currently offlinercair1 From United States of America, joined Oct 2009, 1327 posts, RR: 52
Reply 10, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 11732 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
CUSTOMER SERVICE & SUPPORT

Quoting LH707330 (Reply 7):
What's the total count?

2. 1 BA, 1 AF



rcair1
User currently offlinetrav110 From Canada, joined Jun 2005, 536 posts, RR: 3
Reply 11, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 11679 times:

Quoting MEA-707 (Reply 4):
there might be a link between UV radiation risk in higher altitudes and breast cancer.

'
Humans do experience an increase in exposure to cosmic radiation at altitude due to less atmosphere above available to shield us from these rays, which does increase cancer risk when compared to someone working on the ground.


User currently offlinefrancoflier From France, joined Oct 2001, 3790 posts, RR: 11
Reply 12, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 11607 times:

There's the radiation exposure, but in truth that's probably the lesser inconvenience. The doses are not that great and there's still evidence or measure of their real effect on health.

If any, the killer would be the disheveled hours and wake/sleep patterns. Those have recently been under scrutiny by medical research for their effects on the immune system and general health. Long haul / freighter crews would be more affected than those who don't fly at night or have regular patterns.

It's just one of these profession where one has to keep a healthy lifestyle on the side, especially since it all relies on a very picky doctor's decision every year or less.



Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit posting...
User currently offlinecanoecarrier From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 2841 posts, RR: 12
Reply 13, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 11587 times:

Quoting boeing773ER (Reply 2):
I don't want to take this the wrong way, but have you been a pilot for 35 years or have you generally been flying for 35 years? Because if you have been a pilot for 35 years, and you are 48 years old you must of started when you were 13?

I know a lot of pilots who's parents were pilots and/or flight instructors. They began their flight training as soon as they could see out the windshield. It's not really all that surprising. A good friend of mine is an airline captain and has 2 boys and a Cessna 180. The oldest boy is 10 and he sits up front nearly every time they fly somewhere. That 10 year old probably has more time flying then I do.

Quoting 26point2 (Reply 1):
I spend my downtime running or riding the bike I carry in the ç engine room. Every day a new adventure. Tomorrow's plan: 120 miles on the bicycle on a Pacific island.....and I'm at work.

Do you use a Dahon folding bike? I remember seeing several people fly in to the FBO I used to work at who would unfold a bike and go for a ride when they'd overnight at our airport. Folding bikes are nearly as advanced now as carbon fibre road bikes.

Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 6):
As 26point2 says, you can be healthy or unhealthy. The one thing you cannot do is blame your chosen profession for your resultant lifestyle. That choice is yours. I know a few pilots. Some need to exercise. Others are in great shape. Like in any other job.

This is true. You can either choose to use your downtime to exercise on a layover by lifting a pint at the bar or going to the hotel gym and run on a treadmill. My friend mentioned above uses his to find a Crossfit gym at his layover location and workout.

Quoting francoflier (Reply 12):
If any, the killer would be the disheveled hours and wake/sleep patterns.

And, there are many professions that have this problem. My wife's a nurse that works the night shift it's not uncommon for them to have medical conditions that arise because of their schedule.



The beatings will continue until morale improves
User currently offlinefrancoflier From France, joined Oct 2001, 3790 posts, RR: 11
Reply 14, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 11525 times:

Quoting canoecarrier (Reply 13):
there are many professions that have this problem.

I never said pilots were the only ones to suffer from this. There are many harsh jobs that take a high toll on the system. It's just one of them.



Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit posting...
User currently offline26point2 From United States of America, joined Mar 2010, 837 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 11422 times:

@cannoecarrier.

I don't use a folding bike but understand they are a great product. I travel with a full frame Trek Madone road bike and break it down as much as I can. Frame and wheels go into soft bags and all fits well into the plane.

The GLEX has much room for stufff and I'm fortunate to be able to travel with my bike. In the "old days" I spent my flying downtime either running, hiking or using the hotel gym every day. Again, it's a lifestyle choice.


User currently offlinepilotpip From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3150 posts, RR: 11
Reply 16, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 11191 times:

Like anything else, it's about lifestyle choices. A fat pilot would be a fat accountant. An accountant, however, doesn't need a first class medical. In almost every crash in recent years, including all of them in the US, fatigue has been a major, if not sole role in the crash.

I do think that the job encourages unhealthy choices. We are often in a world of extremes. We sit around airports for hours but then there are days where we might only have 30 minutes to do grab food, use the bathroom etc in between flights. In the first 3 years I did the airline thing, I put on almost 30 pounds to go along with the 30 I put on while working 3 jobs trying to pay my bills as a flight instructor. 5' 7" and 240 pounds is no way to live. I knew it but when my AME smacked me around a little for my decling health and poor numbers for being only in my late 20s, I knew it was time for a change.

I've always been an avid cyclist but we airline pilot aren't as lucky as the corporate world. I can't fit a bike, folding or conventional, into my luggage. I can, however, fit running shoes and shorts in there. Running has become a cornerstone for me. Anything over 12 hours and I get outside for at least an hour run. It's a great way to explore the area and find some neat things you won't see sitting in the hotel. I'll use the treadmill, but only as a last resort. I now have clothing that keeps me comfortable down to about the freezing point so I can run outside as much as possible.

Next up, airport food SUCKS. It's tough to find healthy options in the airport. The solution: bring your own. I bring lots of healthy snacks along on the road and will munch on them throughout the day. Dinners have gone from burgers and fries to a salad and a healthier entre. 3-4 12oz Cokes per day has been replaced by 1 cup of coffee.

The results: In 2 years, I've lost 60 pounds. I'm in better shape at 30 than I was at 20. When I get home after a rough trip I don't have to spend a day recovering, in fact this morning I my bike 40 miles and this is the first break I've taken from the honey-do list. I used to have lots of trouble sleeping, blaming it on the constant changes in circadian rythm. Now, I can get to sleep quickly and wake up feeling refreshed regardless of having an 18 hour overnight, or an 8 hour one.

It's been a long process but worthwhile. I will have that burger and fries once in a while but my body immediately lets me know it's not happy when it happens too often. I save money by bringing more food, and spending less time eating/drinking junk at the restaurant/bar at the hotel. This career field does your body no favors. You owe it to yourself to not give in.



DMI
User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 19954 posts, RR: 59
Reply 17, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 11183 times:

I'm a physician (albeit a pediatrician), but I can think of a few risk factors that piloting would carry. I wouldn't call it "unhealthy," or "bad for you," because it also depends on what is done to ameliorate those risks.

The major risks I see:

1) Increased radiation exposure at high altitude. A single US Transcon airline flight exposes the people in the aircraft to about as much additional cosmic radiation as would be experienced by someone moving from San Francisco to Denver for one year, IIRC. But pilots will make many, many flights in their lifetime. There is not very much that can be done (practically) to ameliorate this risk.

2) Sleep cycle disturbance/melatonin secretion issues. Melatonin is secreted by the pineal gland at night time. Secretion is stimulated by darkness and can be inhibited by even relatively brief exposure to light. Shift workers tend to have decreased overall melatonin exposure and secretion. There are some studies that link a lack of melatonin to certain cancers. This can be partially ameliorated by good sleep habits and taking melatonin supplements.

3) Practical difficulties with maintaining healthy diet and exercise habits. The constantly shifting schedule, long work days, fatigue, and time spent living in hotels and eating in restaurants makes it difficult to make consistently healthy choices. Many pilots do make a point of making the healthiest choices possible to ameliorate this risk factor. However, men (and pilots are usually men) are notoriously bad at caring for their health and watching their weight.

4) Emotional/relationship stress. The large amounts of time spent away from home put strain on interpersonal (spousal) and family relationships. This is stressful, and stress itself is a risk factor for many illnesses. Again, personal coping mechanisms may help to ameliorate these issues.

So those are the issues that come to mind. There are things that can be done to ameliorate all of them except, of course, (1).


User currently offlineCosmicCruiser From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 2255 posts, RR: 15
Reply 18, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 11148 times:

And that's still somewhat debatable. I've been told that you will get more exposure lying out by the pool on your layover than you will on the flight, polar flts excluded. You're also exposed to Radon from the ground 24/7/365 which is the largest exposure percentage. From what I see eating at "off times" to your body clock and then trying to sleep thus inviting reflux is a big issue as well as lowering of your immune systems power from constant fatigue. You get home with a week off and you do it again. It's accumulative.

User currently offlinecanoecarrier From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 2841 posts, RR: 12
Reply 19, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 11135 times:

Quoting 26point2 (Reply 15):
I don't use a folding bike but understand they are a great product. I travel with a full frame Trek Madone road bike and break it down as much as I can. Frame and wheels go into soft bags and all fits well into the plane.

Good for you. In the 7 years I worked at an FBO I never ran into a corporate pilot that did what you're doing. They may have worked out in other ways at the hotel on an overnight, but we had a shower for pilots and a room to stow their stuff if they wanted too. Even on an 8 hour layover you can do more than just sitting around the crew lounge watching Ellen.

As you well know, you can spend most of the day sitting around waiting for the owner to come back from his meeting or you can use that time to find a way to work out. It's not that different than any other office job when it comes to the down time. I work with people now that go to the gym over their lunch break.

Quoting pilotpip (Reply 16):
I've always been an avid cyclist but we airline pilot aren't as lucky as the corporate world. I can't fit a bike, folding or conventional, into my luggage. I can, however, fit running shoes and shorts in there. Running has become a cornerstone for me. Anything over 12 hours and I get outside for at least an hour run. It's a great way to explore the area and find some neat things you won't see sitting in the hotel. I'll use the treadmill, but only as a last resort. I now have clothing that keeps me comfortable down to about the freezing point so I can run outside as much as possible.

If you like to run or cycle after a little while you get used to doing either in the rain or snow. Definitely a lifestyle choice but if I didn't mind the rain, I'd never get on the bike here in Seattle.

Quoting pilotpip (Reply 16):
Next up, airport food SUCKS. It's tough to find healthy options in the airport. The solution: bring your own.

I've known airline pilots that bring their own crew meals and look up places around the crew hotel to eat better food or work out at a Cross-fit gym or lift. But, they are in the minority.



The beatings will continue until morale improves
User currently offlineCX Flyboy From Hong Kong, joined Dec 1999, 6619 posts, RR: 55
Reply 20, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 11107 times:

I agree with Pilotpip in that a lot of it has to do with lifestyle choices. Being a pilot does not automatically mean that you have to be unhealthy. I do however think that often leading a healthier lifestyle as a pilot does require extra effort over so many other professions and many do not do it.

Having said that, I think that we are going to see a first generation of pilots who spend 40 years of their careers flying purely longhaul, doing 14+hr flights several times a month over the North Pole, where radiation is recognised as being higher. I am of course referring mainly to the operations in my own airline but there would be many other similar examples. New pilots joining are often in their early 20s and assuming a retirement age of 65, I strongly suspect that 40 years of habitual jetlag and exposure to radiation and breathing aircraft fumes is not going to be good for their health.

I think that data coming out in the next 10-15 years will be interesting to see, the saving grace might only be that awareness of health and healthy lifestyle choices are much more prevalent in this day and age than they have ever been.


User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17068 posts, RR: 66
Reply 21, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 11086 times:

Quoting CX Flyboy (Reply 20):
I do however think that often leading a healthier lifestyle as a pilot does require extra effort over so many other professions and many do not do it.

Agreed. However being a pilot has this in common with most other professions with irregular and long hours. Many executives who work in an office have the same scheduling issues with exercise, and often a lot of fatigue.

Quoting CX Flyboy (Reply 20):
I think that data coming out in the next 10-15 years will be interesting to see, the saving grace might only be that awareness of health and healthy lifestyle choices are much more prevalent in this day and age than they have ever been.

Absolutely. The difference in awareness today compared to a couple of generations ago is astounding.



"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offline26point2 From United States of America, joined Mar 2010, 837 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 11040 times:

Pilotpip is right....start a healthy habit and it turns into a healthy lifestyle.

I ran high school track but spent my college years drinking beer and gaining weight. Then became a pilot and drank even more beer and gained more weight.... dinners out followed by many more beers = not good.

Changed it all at mid-20s and started to "jog" then soon run again.

NYC Marathon this November will be my 20th marathon in 20 years...most of the training done while on the road at work. At 48 years old I am now in transition from long runs to long bike rides.

Managing a healthy life while living at the Marriott, or wherever, can be done.

26.2

[Edited 2012-07-30 22:07:33]

[Edited 2012-07-30 22:19:03]

User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 19954 posts, RR: 59
Reply 23, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 11026 times:

Quoting CosmicCruiser (Reply 18):
And that's still somewhat debatable. I've been told that you will get more exposure lying out by the pool on your layover than you will on the flight, polar flts excluded.

Cosmic rays vs. UV rays. Different sorts of DNA damage. UV tends to cause DNA base pairs to fuse together requiring excision and repair, but because it's usually single-strand damage, repair is easy. Cosmic rays track through a cell leaving a narrow and highly concentrated track of free radicals, which lead to double-strand DNA breaks. These are much more complex to repair and invariably result in loss of some DNA sequence. If this were to occur in the coding portion of, say, a tumor-supressor gene...


User currently offlineCX Flyboy From Hong Kong, joined Dec 1999, 6619 posts, RR: 55
Reply 24, posted (2 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 10985 times:

Quoting Starlionblue (Reply 21):
Quoting CX Flyboy (Reply 20):
I do however think that often leading a healthier lifestyle as a pilot does require extra effort over so many other professions and many do not do it.

Agreed. However being a pilot has this in common with most other professions with irregular and long hours. Many executives who work in an office have the same scheduling issues with exercise, and often a lot of fatigue.

Yes agreed fatigue, shift work and long hours are common in a fair few industries but few are also exposed to radiation levels that pilots are as well. There is more evidence to suggest that the levels of toxins in cabin air even on the more modern aircraft are hazardous to health, something an office executive isn't exposed to. Sitting in the cockpit surrounded on all fours by electronic equipment, wires and high voltage voltage, all emitting its own radiation levels is going to have some effect too.


25 grimey : Thanks for all the replies lads. I work as a project manager in a construction company and its really no different lifestyle compared to a pilot, I am
26 Post contains images Starlionblue : This is the crux I think. Yes there are lifestyle and health risks to becoming a pilot. But it beats an office all day. And you get to sit at the poi
27 canoecarrier : Out of curiosity, has the quality of cabin air changed any since the 1980 or '90's?
28 tdscanuck : It's better now. It was always extremely clean (the whole recirculation foo fah rah is a huge red herring) but it was also very dry. The newest stuff
29 canoecarrier : Thanks Tom, at least they can't smoke on planes anymore. But, that was an occupational hazard for many different jobs.
30 Post contains links rmoore7734 : i would say flying in the trade winds (Alasaka/West coast) from Fukushima disaster are hazardous for flight attendants & passengers as well http:/
31 DocLightning : Really? The air in my office isn't replaced six times per hour. You're telling me that all the computers and lights and internet wireless around me i
32 Starlionblue : I would think that since the air is filtered radiation any bearing particles do not get to the occupants. Also, that source is a bit dodgy in its con
33 Post contains images IBOAviator : Air Canada's old Vickers Viscount aircraft used to have radium in some of the flight instrumentation and there were many (not sure on exact number) c
34 DocLightning : A bit dodgy? They claim that radiation from artificial radioisotopes is somehow worse than natural radiation, even if the levels aren't detectably di
35 Post contains images Starlionblue : British understatement old chum. I agree with you that the whole thing is completely loony. Now where is my tinfoil hat?
36 Post contains images rcair1 : Ya had me doubting the viability of that website till you got to the last one.... Just kidding folks....
37 Post contains images DocLightning : Tinfoil hats cause alzheimers and are actually a government mind control plot. Just ask Naturalnews.com!
38 CX Flyboy : The air in your office isn't passed through a jet engine with various sources of aviation grade oils around various valves. You can google cabin air
39 StickShaker : There has been quite a few documented cases in Australia where B146 pilots have been so incapacited that they couldn't continue on to their destinati
40 tdscanuck : A properly maintained engine has no oil anywhere that bleed air goes. If you're getting engine fluids in your air, something is wrong with the engine
41 CX Flyboy : Perhaps a properly maintained aircraft/engine SHOULD have clean air. The problem is that there have been plenty of documented cases of bad smells in a
42 tdscanuck : Another problem is that the reports of bad smells, almost always untraceable to any maintenance action or mechanical problem, are *extremely* highly
43 CX Flyboy : So I take it that in your opinion this Aerotoxic Syndrome is a completely made up thing?
44 StickShaker : I agree that a correctly maintained (and correctly functioning) aircraft should not present any problems - issues on the B146 have been blamed on eng
45 tdscanuck : No. My opinion is that there isn't enough good data to know it's "a thing." There certainly are funny smells/fumes on aircraft sometimes; I'm not awa
46 DocLightning : Have there been cases in which entire aircraft full of people have become sickened by fumes in the cabin not caused by something like a fire? Yes, of
47 CX Flyboy : I agree that there is little hard evidence there but there is something there. I believe that this new generation of long-haul pilots who are going to
48 canoecarrier : For comparison, maybe we should approach from a different angle. I started working in aviation when I was 15. I worked at an FBO until I was 23, took
49 DocLightning : Wait... aircraft with a duration of at least 12 hours have been around since the early 1980's at least. Unless you think that something magical happe
50 Starlionblue : They are becoming more common. I think the issue is that at some airlines (SQ and CX to name two) you get lots of these flights for some pilots. For
51 DocLightning : They are still uncommon and will always be uncommon. It's nothing about technology; it's just about how far people tend to travel from home and how o
52 CX Flyboy : I was never referring to the entire pilot group. It is obvious that many airlines will never go longhaul and even fewer will be doing polar routes. A
53 DocLightning : In that case, there are some considerations. As one approaches the pole, ionized particles from solar wind do tend to approach closer to the ground (
54 lexkid12300 : Has anyone considered the on-board weather radar as a risk factor? I'm not sure how much radar bounces back into the cockpit from the radome, but it c
55 Starlionblue : The radome is transparent to radar (for obvious reasons) and is mounted so it can only point away from the aircraft. Should be a problem then right?
56 CosmicCruiser : can you point me to a article on this?
57 MrChips : Has there ever been any kind of conclusive link between microwave radiation and cancers? My understanding is that most of the studies implicating cel
58 lexkid12300 : I don't have any articles off hand there's been a lot of talk about it- I was just wondering if anyone's studied the effect of radar on pilots. I thin
59 DocLightning : They've been in pretty wide use for about 20 years now. If there is an increase in cancer, it is pretty small. Some studies have found an association
60 CosmicCruiser : sounds like a knee jerk reaction that's all too common today. Actually no one has mentioned that you are subjected to Radon from the ground 24/7 and
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