speedbrds
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Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 11:25 am

I just heard on the local news (ABC7 Southern California) that a body was found in the gears bay of a BA 747. That's all I know right now.
 
ikramerica
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 11:32 am

This has happened before, where the person got onto the jet in a third country, landed at LHR and then the same plane continued to the USA where the body was found. I believe it was a VS flight, but could be wrong...
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juventus
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 11:42 am

This has happen before, and desperate people continue to attemp it.

Death probably occured in London as the gear was being raised. By the time the airplane landed in Los Angeles, this person must have been death for hours.
 
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kc135topboom
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 1:32 pm

Didn't this just happen 2 weeks ago on a DL flight into ATL?
 
Qantas767
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 1:44 pm

If the gear doesn't crush them the cold will get them... I would imagine it would be someone from a poorer nation, I rekonwould be a terrifying experience. They must have been desperate. Also doesn't give a good account of security if someone can jump on a 744...what else can they put in one??
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LAXintl
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 1:51 pm

LAX_BODY_CAOL-?SITE=KNXAM&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT" target=_blank>http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories...NXAM&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT

Body found in airplane wheel well at LAX

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- A man's body was found Sunday in the wheel well of a British Airways jet at Los Angeles International Airport, authorities said.

The 747-400 had arrived from London Heathrow Airport at 3:15 p.m. and was to depart for a return flight at 5:20 p.m.

Authorities had not identified the victim late Sunday, saying only that he was a young black male.

Investigators were trying to determine if he got into the aircraft in Los Angeles or London or a previous departure point.

"One of the pilots was conducting a preflight walk-around check of the aircraft and the pilot discovered an unidentified body in the front right wheel well,"
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TransWorldSTL
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 2:11 pm

How horrible must these peoples' living conditions be, in order for them to be desperate enough to jump in the wheel well of a plane destined for an unknown destination?
 
goldorak
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 3:57 pm

This happens about 2 or 3 times a year at CDG for flights coming from Africa. Terrible situation
 
AirWillie6475
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:04 pm

This happens quite a few times in LA also. Last time the guy actually survived because he found a way into a warm part of the cargo from the gear bays. I'm wondering if these people know that the gear isn't pressurized.
 
ikramerica
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:05 pm

Quoting Juventus (Reply 2):
Death probably occured in London as the gear was being raised.

Not likely he got on in LHR, as there are few people who would find life so bad in the UK that they would risk this.

As I said, this has happened before on a flight from London, where the person got on in a THIRD country, the plane landed at LHR, became a new flight to the USA, but the body was not discovered until the inspection in the USA.
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
LAXdude1023
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:05 pm

Quoting TransWorldSTL (Reply 6):
How horrible must these peoples' living conditions be, in order for them to be desperate enough to jump in the wheel well of a plane destined for an unknown destination?

Thats what comes to my mind. Has anyone succesfully pulled of somthing like that alive? I dont even think its possible. You would think they would know that they would die.
It is what it is...
 
WesternDC1010
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:18 pm

According to the local news here in Los Angeles, the body of a male was found on BA 283, a Boeing 747-436 (G-BNLB). It was located in the right main wheel well by a pilot performing his inspection at Gate 104 of the Tom Bradley International Terminal. The body was removed and the investigation began. BA 282 was then cleared and left 4 hours late for London-Heathrow.

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RichPhitzwell
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:22 pm

Cold, someone could live, but at that elevation it is what -16 or something. Lack of O2 and decompression would definately not help.

Some have survived, sorry no links, but most die.
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WesternDC1010
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:29 pm

Quoting RichPhitzwell (Reply 12):
Cold, someone could live, but at that elevation it is what -16 or something. Lack of O2 and decompression would definately not help.

Some have survived, sorry no links, but most die.

Here are some interesting articles:

http://www.slate.com/id/2093341/

Do Jet Stowaways Ever Survive?
The dangers of traveling beneath business class.
By Brendan I. Koerner
Updated Wednesday, Dec. 31, 2003, at 2:07 PM ET
For the second time in a week, police at New York's Kennedy Airport have discovered a body in the wheel well of an arriving jet. What are the hazards of traveling in an airplane's wheel well, and do any of these desperate stowaways ever survive?

The odds of survival, always slim at best, decrease in proportion to the duration and altitude of the flight. Few stowaways are equipped to handle the frigid temperatures, which can dip below minus-50 degrees Fahrenheit on some flights. The bodies of stowaways usually show signs of severe frostbite and the longer the flight, the more likely that the illicit passenger will succumb to the elements.

Others perish due to asphyxiation, as the air at high altitudes lacks sufficient oxygen and the wheel wells are unpressurized. Think of how mountaineers scaling Mount Everest are forced to carry oxygen tanks, and that peak measures shy of 30,000 feet—just below the altitude that many planes reach. The chilliness and the oxygen deprivation become more severe the higher a plane climbs, so stowaways on high-flying transoceanic voyages face the worst odds.

A third danger is the likelihood of tumbling from the wheel well prior to arrival. Landing gear is typically deployed at an altitude of around 1,500 feet, and the stowaways are given little warning. Unless they're holding onto something inside the compartment, a fatal plunge is difficult to avoid. Blackouts caused by oxygen deprivation are common, so many stowaways are likely unconscious at the crucial moment.

Few hopeful refugees attempt wheel-well arrivals every year. In 2000, for example, the FAA counted 13 such stowaways, three of whom survived. In 2001, six tried to enter the United States in such a fashion, with no survivors. In 2002, five perished and one survived. (The wheel-well survival rate since 1947 is 20.3 percent.) The death estimates may be low, as some bodies may have tumbled out into water or remote areas, never to be recovered.

There is, however, the occasional miracle case, none more fantastic than the tale of Fidel Maruhi. The Tahitian native lived through a 7-and-a-half-hour flight from Papeete to Los Angeles. When he was discovered, Maruhi's body temperature was just 79 degrees, about 6 degrees colder than what's usually considered fatal. Repatriated to Tahiti after his feat, Maruhi later said that he remembers nothing of the trip, having blacked out just after takeoff.

Last December, a Cuban refugee named Victor Alvarez Molina made it to Montreal in the wheel well of a DC-10, enduring four hours in temperatures that dropped to minus-40 F. His saving grace was a leak in a compartment pipe, which seeped out warm air. The pipe also provided him a convenient lifeline to hold onto when the landing gear deployed. Unlike Maruhi, Molina was granted refugee status and now hopes to bring his family to Canada. Presumably in more comfortable circumstances.

http://www.news24.com/News24/AnanziArticle/0,,2-7-1442_1718858,00.html

http://www.iasa.com.au/folders/Safet...abin_Safety/wheelwelldwellers.html

http://www.mg.co.za/articlepage.aspx...g_news__national/&articleid=242820

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ZRHnerd
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:34 pm

Quoting AirWillie6475 (Reply 8):
I'm wondering if these people know that the gear isn't pressurized.

Regular people from a third world country don't know anything about aviation at all, let alone specific facts like pressurazion. Thats why they keep on doing it. They don't know about the danger they are about to get into.
 
HBJZA
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 6:00 pm

Quoting LAXdude1023 (Reply 10):
Has anyone succesfully pulled of somthing like that alive?

I remember a few years ago that one guy did actually survived from a flight from Afrika to CDG, travelling in the landing gear bay. He was found suffering from hypothermy, was healed in Paris and then sent back to Afrika. The same poor guy was found dead a few weeks later in a field near CDG ! Even after having experienced it once and survived, he did attempt a second time to travel this way !! Amazing isn't it ?

Quoting TransWorldSTL (Reply 6):
How horrible must these peoples' living conditions be, in order for them to be desperate enough to jump in the wheel well of a plane destined for an unknown destination?

I know that some baggage loaders or ramp agents make money out of it. Pretending that they will arrive safe in Europe, they let them access to the aircraft and jump in the gear bay for a ridiculous summ of money (ridiculous for us "rich" countries). For sure none of these guys know the condition of travelling in there and probably have no idea about pressurisation, cold or whatsoever happening in an aircraft at 35000 feet.......
 
manni
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 6:07 pm

Happens often. Only 2 weeks ago a body was discovered in the landinggear of an SNBA A333 in BRU coming from Africa. This wasn't the first time for SNBA, and Sabena had similar incidents.

It's the freezing cold and being in the outside at high altitude that are deadly, not lack of space or being 'crushed' by the landinggear.
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boysteve
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 6:12 pm

Quoting RichPhitzwell (Reply 12):
Cold, someone could live, but at that elevation it is what -16 or something. Lack of O2 and decompression would definately not help.

I think the temperature is closer to -60 than -16. I am talking Celsius here.
 
8herveg
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 6:15 pm

How do these guys get in there? Do they climb over the airport fences and across the airport aprons to get to the aircraft?
 
ZRHnerd
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 6:20 pm

Quoting 8herveg (Reply 19):
How do these guys get in there? Do they climb over the airport fences and across the airport aprons to get to the aircraft?

I'm not sure wether some African airports have fences at all.
 
swiftski
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 6:24 pm

For those of you who, like me, love trivia, this jet is City of Edinburgh and was one used recently to ferry pax to Germany during the Heathrow issues.
 
flybyguy
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 8:33 pm

Unfortunately a majority of these stowaways come from Africa, a continent so plagued by famine, war, disease and general pestilence that it's a wonder it's not literally nick-named "Hell on Earth".

Besides that however, the fact that this stowaway situation is still a problem should see 1st world countries with security concerns barring flights from countries that have this problem, at least until their apparent lapses in security are properly remedied. My chief worry here is that if people are so desperate to do this sort of thing, how hard would it be for the same sort of people, with guaranteed payments to their families from al-qaieda (or other organization) to strap themselves up with explosives as a stowaway and take down a foreign jet?
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oly720man
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 8:53 pm

Quoting WesternDC1010 (Reply 11):
According to the local news here in Los Angeles, the body of a male was found on BA 283, a Boeing 747-436 (G-BNLB).

Last flight I can find for G-BNLB was it doing the BA27 to HKG, leaving Heathrow on the 26th Jan and arriving back early on the 28th.

SIN-LHR arr LHR on the 26th Jan

CPT-LHR arr LHR on the 24th Jan

YVR-LHR arr LHR on the 22 Jan.
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chrisnh
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 9:01 pm

Quoting ZRHnerd (Reply 14):
Regular people from a third world country don't know anything about aviation at all, let alone specific facts like pressurazion. Thats why they keep on doing it. They don't know about the danger they are about to get into.

Excellent & valid point. It will probably be found that this man was from Africa. It does prompt the question of how thorough the pre-flight inspection was at LHR, before the jet was sent on its way to LAX.

Chris in NH
 
PanAmOldDC8
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 9:07 pm

Quoting ChrisNH (Reply 23):
Regular people from a third world country don't know anything about aviation at all, let alone specific facts like pressurazion. Thats why they keep on doing it. They don't know about the danger they are about to get into.

How true and how very sad. Desperation will make people do desperate things. That is why this world as a whole has to start to help the people from the under developed countries through these terrible times
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keego
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 9:15 pm

Quoting RichPhitzwell (Reply 12):
Some have survived, sorry no links, but most die.

I saw a recent documentry with someone who had not once but twice survived this. He got on a DC-10 in Havana, Cuba (The airline escapes me) the aircraft was bound for Montreal but had a stop in Villa Clara I beleive. The 1st leg was only 1/2 an hour but the 2nd leg to Montreal was over 5hrs. The documentry had an interview with him also, It was called "Amazing People" and was on Discovery Channel
 
StarGoldLHR
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Jan 29, 2007 9:41 pm

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 9):
Not likely he got on in LHR, as there are few people who would find life so bad in the UK that they would risk this.

Try watching 10 walking london's council estates..(funnily enough east londons are under LHR's fllight path,.. maybe they dropped out and stayed where they fell).
So far in 2008 45 flights and Gold already. JFK, IAD, LGA, SIN, HKG, NRT, AKL, PPT, LAX still to book ! Home Airport LCY
 
bh4007
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 3:04 am

Surely even the most disadvantaged and uneducated person would know the extreme temperatures that one encounters at 35,000 ft? You would be lucky if it was above -20 up there.
 
Arcrftlvr
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 3:04 am

Quoting LAXdude1023 (Reply 10):
Has anyone succesfully pulled of somthing like that alive?

Yes, as a matter of fact someone stowed away on a TN flight to LAX a few years back (I don't remember where the flight originated). The person survived...
 
richierich
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 3:21 am

Quoting StarGoldLHR (Reply 26):
Try watching 10 walking london's council estates..(funnily enough east londons are under LHR's fllight path,.. maybe they dropped out and stayed where they fell).

Huh? This doesn't even make any sense!
While I think it would be unusual to find out that this person boarded the wheel well in London, I beg the question "why wasn't he found?" during the LHR preflight?!
None shall pass!!!!
 
elcableguy77
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 3:38 am

Apparently, someone got a picture of this particular flight as it was taxiing at LAX.
Photo here.
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detroitflyer
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 3:56 am

what i dont understand, is how the few people who manage to survive, actually survive????  confused   scratchchin 
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GDB
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 4:06 am

This report from 2001, gives an insight into both the stowaways and their motivations;
http://www.guardian.co.uk/g2/story/0,,523278,00.html
 
Cincinnati747
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 4:42 am

Sweet Baby Jesus, why are people stickin bodies in wheel wells?? Could be the most economical way to fly
 
airfoilsguy
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 4:55 am

Quoting 8herveg (Reply 18):
How do these guys get in there? Do they climb over the airport fences and across the airport aprons to get to the aircraft?



Quoting Richierich (Reply 29):
I beg the question "why wasn't he found?" during the LHR preflight?!

Most of these people wait at the end of the runway and make a dash for the plane as it is lining up for takeoff. I have seen video of it somewhere but can't remember where.

Quoting Bh4007 (Reply 27):
Surely even the most disadvantaged and uneducated person would know the extreme temperatures that one encounters at 35,000 ft? You would be lucky if it was above -20 up there

Not really, some "educated" people don't even know this.

Quoting Detroitflyer (Reply 31):
i dont understand, is how the few people who manage to survive, actually survive????

That is a good question considering that most of these people are from warm climates and don't even own a winter coat.

Quoting ZRHnerd (Reply 19):
I'm not sure wether some African airports have fences at all.

This one dosen't seem to have one.


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Desh
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 6:46 am

Quoting TransWorldSTL (Reply 6):
How horrible must these peoples' living conditions be, in order for them to be desperate enough to jump in the wheel well of a plane destined for an unknown destination?

Pretty bad - but I think it has more to do with the fact they they dont know they are facing certain death - oxygen, temprature situations at 30k + feets may not be known. The fact they all seem to try the exact thing might suggest that there is some urban legend about how someone can escape - its just that the risk-reward equation is based on flawed information.

Always sad to hear about such incident ...
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seabok
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 6:50 am

Quoting Oly720man (Reply 22):
Last flight I can find for G-BNLB was it doing the BA27 to HKG, leaving Heathrow on the 26th Jan and arriving back early on the 28th.

SIN-LHR arr LHR on the 26th Jan

CPT-LHR arr LHR on the 24th Jan

YVR-LHR arr LHR on the 22 Jan.

AP is reporting that the stowaway was a South African youth.

http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/htm.../2003546515_webairplanebody29.html

Seems like he probably stowed away in Cape Town on the 23rd January but was not discovered until 28th January, despite the aircraft travelling to Singapore in between.

Very sad.
 
FighterPilot
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 7:13 am

Does anyone have any information about the wheel wells of these particular aircraft? Where exactly would one crawl up into without being crushed?

Cal  airplane 
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jbguller
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 9:52 am

Quoting FighterPilot (Reply 37):
Does anyone have any information about the wheel wells of these particular aircraft? Where exactly would one crawl up into without being crushed?

...why do you want to know?  Wink
 
FighterPilot
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 10:03 am

Quoting Jbguller (Reply 38):
...why do you want to know? Wink

I'm thinking of flying YYZ-LHR real cheap  Wink

I've never seen the wheel wells of any large aircraft and am wondering how much room would actually be in there with wheels up. Does anyone have pictures of the wheel wells of these large aircraft mentioned in the articles?

Cal  airplane 
*Insert Sound Of GE90 Spooling Up Here*
 
Indio66
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 10:04 am

Why don't the manufacturers put some type of sensor/alarm in the wheel well?

These stowaways are putting both themselves and others at risk.
 
corey07850
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 10:24 am

Quoting Richierich (Reply 29):
I beg the question "why wasn't he found?" during the LHR preflight?!

That's what I was thinking...

Quoting AirWillie6475 (Reply 8):
I'm wondering if these people know that the gear isn't pressurized.

I bet a surprising number of a.netters wouldn't know whether the landing gear bay is pressurized or not... And your comment is assuming these people even know what pressurization is.
 
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HAWK21M
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Jan 30, 2007 4:34 pm

Sad Case as People are not Familiar with the Clearences in the Wheel wells & the retracting Gears,Also lack of knowledge of Pressurisation issues,cause these tragedies.
I've seen a few dead birds in the Wheel well on Aircraft Arrival at times.Hope never to see the person ever.
regds
MEL
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
richierich
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Wed Jan 31, 2007 12:47 am

Quoting Airfoilsguy (Reply 34):
Most of these people wait at the end of the runway and make a dash for the plane as it is lining up for takeoff. I have seen video of it somewhere but can't remember where.

I hear you, but I don't think this is the case at LHR!
Assuming that this guy didn't hideout at LHR (who knows, he might have had enough of the London weather), he must have been there from a previous flight. I am amazed that he was noticed on a prior check...I'd hate to be the captain from the LHR-LAX flight because he is probably going to be grilled over this.

Quoting GDB (Reply 32):
This report from 2001, gives an insight into both the stowaways and their motivations;

Very sad. Unbelieveably sad, actually.
We are all very lucky.
None shall pass!!!!
 
wrighbrothers
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Feb 05, 2007 12:00 am

The fact that he wasn't found during one pre-flight check is pretty bad, but the fact that this person went 4 days (4 flights and therefore 4 pre-fllight checks) without being found is pretty unacceptable.
Presuming he died on the way from CPT-LHR, that means they had checks at LHR, SIN, LHR, HKG and LHR again before going off to LAX, and nobody found him.
While the pilots aren't supposed to climb into the landing gear, the engineers can, and since the landing gear isn't the biggest of places, all it needs is a quick look. I agree, they aren't really looking for dead bodies on a pre-flight check, but they are supposed to be looking for anything unusual, and the fact that someone found it, means that it must have been at-least a bit visible.
The worrying thing is, that could have been anything, a bomb, drugs, whatever, and it went through LHR 3 times and possibly the engineering base, without being noticed by anyone.

If you want to know how big a Landing gear area is, here's an idea (although it's a 777, you get the idea):
Big version: Width: 1280 Height: 960 File size: 525kb
Landing gear area of BA 777 G-VIIL.


Wrighbrothers

[Edited 2007-02-04 16:20:59]
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qslinger
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Feb 05, 2007 12:07 am

I guess they need to look into installing wheel well cameras to prevent this stuff.

I am sure thier situation is pretty horrible in their country, but risking lives of passengers aboard the aircraft is not a nice thing.
Raj Koona
 
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HAWK21M
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Mon Feb 05, 2007 6:29 pm

If a Stowaway can get access to an Aircraft.Speaks poor about Airport Security.
regds
MEL
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
richierich
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RE: Body Found In BA Flight To LAX

Tue Feb 06, 2007 12:33 am

Quoting HAWK21M (Reply 46):
If a Stowaway can get access to an Aircraft.Speaks poor about Airport Security.

I agree but, without sounding prejudicial, this is why I didn't think it occurred in LHR. It had to be from an earlier flight, and CPT was one of the likely candidates considering the plane type, likely routes, etc.

I'm sure you would agree that security at some airports is better than others. LHR may not be a gem, but I think somebody would notice a person running after an airplane and climbing in the landing gear.

The main tragedy here is that a person died believing he'd find a way to a better life in a far off land. May he rest in peace.

I doubt BA can do much to singlehandedly control wheel-well incursions at less than secure airports (although something should be done..), but the real question I have is why this was missed during the pre-flight checks. Obviously a more thorough check of these areas is warranted... assuming this guy was dead, he could have fallen out during the next descent and caused damage or injury on the ground.
None shall pass!!!!

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