daver3188
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Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Fri Aug 17, 2012 7:30 pm

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.
 
rrobards2
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Fri Aug 17, 2012 7:36 pm

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
 
jpetekyxmd80
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Fri Aug 17, 2012 7:36 pm

Seems the aircraft was being brought from another gate or a remote parking location.
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Stitch
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Fri Aug 17, 2012 7:38 pm

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.
 
brilondon
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Fri Aug 17, 2012 7:47 pm

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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wjcandee
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Fri Aug 17, 2012 8:17 pm

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.
 
NWADTWE16
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Fri Aug 17, 2012 8:28 pm

Old DTW Northwest ops were the same way as Customs was in terminal I and the Europe and ASia flights departed from F concourse...
 
blueflyer
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Fri Aug 17, 2012 8:48 pm

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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FlyingSicilian
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Fri Aug 17, 2012 9:03 pm

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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PHX787
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Fri Aug 17, 2012 9:11 pm

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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Flyer732
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Fri Aug 17, 2012 11:17 pm

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.
 
KPWMSpotter
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Fri Aug 17, 2012 11:27 pm

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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PHX787
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Fri Aug 17, 2012 11:49 pm

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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xjramper
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Sat Aug 18, 2012 12:05 am

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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seabosdca
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Sat Aug 18, 2012 12:24 am

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.
 
DLD9S
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Sat Aug 18, 2012 12:38 am

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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wjcandee
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Sat Aug 18, 2012 3:23 am

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.
 
FlyASAGuy2005
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Sat Aug 18, 2012 3:32 am

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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PHX787
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Sat Aug 18, 2012 3:48 am

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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FlyASAGuy2005
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Sat Aug 18, 2012 4:00 am

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.
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aklrno
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Sat Aug 18, 2012 5:10 am

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.
 
JONC777
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Sat Aug 18, 2012 9:29 am

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. . .
 
daver3188
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RE: Passenger Death And Nobody Deplanes At Gate

Sat Aug 18, 2012 3:28 pm

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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