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hnl808
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AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Sun Jan 12, 2020 10:03 pm

Air Canada flight 35 traveling from Vancouver, Canada, to Brisbane, Australia was diverted to Honolulu on Saturday following the death of a male passenger mid flight.

Flight has since left HNL this morning enroute to BNE after overnighting.

https://www.staradvertiser.com/2020/01/11/breaking-news/air-canada-flight-diverted-to-honolulu-following-passengers-death/
 
SpaceshipDC10
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Sun Jan 12, 2020 11:14 pm

I noticed that AC2035 departed from HNL after turning around and diverting there yesterday, now I know the sad reason that promted it.
 
dfwjim1
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Sun Jan 12, 2020 11:37 pm

The visitor organization that helps travelers in distress sounds like a great outfit.
 
smokeybandit
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 12:00 am

dfwjim1 wrote:
The visitor organization that helps travelers in distress sounds like a great outfit.


Especially in the unique case of an unaccompanied minor alone in a different country for the night.
 
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zeke
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 12:26 am

I don’t see the point in diverting for an apparent death in flight. Especially for a passenger with a known medical condition.
Human rights lawyers are "ambulance chasers of the very worst kind.'" - Sky News
 
filejw
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 12:53 am

zeke wrote:
I don’t see the point in diverting for an apparent death in flight. Especially for a passenger with a known medical condition.


Most long haul airlines have an plan /procedure for a death in flight and I don't think diversion is high on the list.
 
sccutler
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 12:59 am

I recall an incident described to me by an friend who was an FA on a NWA flight from Narita to Detroit - a passenger onboard was gravely ill (had apparently hidden that fact from the airline, and was traveling to the states to die). They died onboard, and as there was no physician aboard who could declare the passenger dead, the crew had to continue CPR until the flight had landed. It was, I am led to believe (and who'd doubt it?) a very traumatic experience for the cabin crew, all of whom had to take turns administering CPR to a clearly-dead person.

Might this (or something like this) come into play?
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smokeybandit
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 1:05 am

It'd be traumatic for a lot of people. Some unnecessarily, some valid.
 
Ziyulu
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 1:26 am

Maybe they diverted because they needed to make a fuel stop.
 
MIflyer12
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 1:57 am

zeke wrote:
I don’t see the point in diverting for an apparent death in flight. Especially for a passenger with a known medical condition.


Because people who board a commercial flight with a health condition don't deserve respect?
 
Qantas16
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 2:01 am

Ziyulu wrote:
Maybe they diverted because they needed to make a fuel stop.


AC35 YVR-BNE has operated for 3+ years now without, to my knowledge, a diversion being required mid-way for fuel (a few diversions to SYD/OOL due fog in BNE though). I doubt fuel is the issue!
 
BravoOne
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 2:04 am

MIflyer12 wrote:
zeke wrote:
I don’t see the point in diverting for an apparent death in flight. Especially for a passenger with a known medical condition.


Because people who board a commercial flight with a health condition don't deserve respect?



Not at all. I have had several diversions on the North Atlantic for the the dumbest reasons like I left my cardiac pills in my checked luggage. Duh....
 
eamondzhang
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 2:07 am

Qantas16 wrote:
Ziyulu wrote:
Maybe they diverted because they needed to make a fuel stop.


AC35 YVR-BNE has operated for 3+ years now without, to my knowledge, a diversion being required mid-way for fuel (a few diversions to SYD/OOL due fog in BNE though). I doubt fuel is the issue!

Although knowing the OPs history think you missed the sarcasm here

Michael
 
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zeke
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 2:25 am

MIflyer12 wrote:
Because people who board a commercial flight with a health condition don't deserve respect?


The article says the passenger was sick before the flight. With such passengers they need to get a waiver from the airline, that waiver amongst other things is an understanding that they will not divert for an apparent death in flight.

The diversion does nothing for the passenger who died, and may make it very difficult and expensive for their family move the body after its released by the medical examiners.
Human rights lawyers are "ambulance chasers of the very worst kind.'" - Sky News
 
planecane
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 2:38 am

zeke wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:
Because people who board a commercial flight with a health condition don't deserve respect?


The article says the passenger was sick before the flight. With such passengers they need to get a waiver from the airline, that waiver amongst other things is an understanding that they will not divert for an apparent death in flight.

The diversion does nothing for the passenger who died, and may make it very difficult and expensive for their family move the body after its released by the medical examiners.


I agree with you. If the flight is to full to move people away from the body does it really matter if they are near it for a few more hours?

For the other passengers, if a diversion can save a passenger having a medical emergency then you can understand and won't be too upset (unless you are very selfish). If the person is dead, why effect other people's travel plans.
 
codyul
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 9:50 am

Only a doctor or similarly qualified medical professional can pronounce a death. If the crew was unfortunate enough not to have a doctor onboard then, as was previously mentioned, they would be required to perform CPR on the deceased until landing at an airport for medical professionals to take over.
This is definitely a possibility.
YUL PNC :weightlifter:
 
Max Q
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 9:59 am

Our policy is to never declare a death in flight

Whether or not a physician is on board and has assisted a legal determination of death is left until we have landed
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


GGg
 
jayunited
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 3:25 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
zeke wrote:
I don’t see the point in diverting for an apparent death in flight. Especially for a passenger with a known medical condition.


Because people who board a commercial flight with a health condition don't deserve respect?


I understand your sentiment towards zeke's comment but you have to understand zeke is not trying to be heartless or cruel, this is the way the industry works you don't divert for an apparent in flight death it serves no purpose.

In a medical situation a flight is diverted to save a persons life now there are times when a person dies while the flight is enroute to the diversion airport which is completely different than what zeke is talking about. There have been times here at UA on domestic flights where there is an apparent death in flight and UA will continue onward to the intended destination. In fact just last fall ORD-LAX the flight had just taken off and an elderly person who I believe was over 80 years old simply passed away the flight continued all the way to LAX. There are protocols in place to deal with these types of situations but you don't divert. While this might seem shocking to you the truth is in flight deaths happen a lot more than the media reports.
 
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cirrusdragoon
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 5:37 pm

Medlink Physicians can instruct crew to cease resuscitation efforts, therefore no, cabin crew fo not need to keep performing cpr until the plane lands. They probably diverted as the crew probably needed to stand down , a death onboard is traumatic for the cabin crew. Either a crew change happened or they needed to re-sort themselves.
 
jeffh747
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 7:54 pm

dfwjim1 wrote:
The visitor organization that helps travelers in distress sounds like a great outfit.

Yes I think that is a highlight of this otherwise traumatic experience for the passengers and crew members. I'm sure other airports/cities have organizations like this but it seems like their efforts certainly helped these travelers out. Well done to them.
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kjeld0d
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 8:35 pm

BravoOne wrote:
Not at all. I have had several diversions on the North Atlantic for the the dumbest reasons like I left my cardiac pills in my checked luggage. Duh....


Can't you just climb down into the baggage compartment like in Air Force One??
 
BravoOne
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 9:01 pm

Probably one of the stranger ones was going from HNL to LAX. Asian couple on board with their adult grandson. The old man dies and his body was laid out in the aft service center. We have to wait for the authorities to board and pronounce him dead before the FAs can get off. The wife and grandson deplane and continue on to LAS. I guess they had more important things to do in LAS.

Another time the airplane was stuck on the ground wait for a county coroner to show up at the West Yellowstone airport to pronounce the passenger dead before removing him. Think it took over 4 hours for him to get there.
Last edited by BravoOne on Mon Jan 13, 2020 9:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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AirKevin
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 9:04 pm

kjeld0d wrote:
BravoOne wrote:
Not at all. I have had several diversions on the North Atlantic for the the dumbest reasons like I left my cardiac pills in my checked luggage. Duh....

Can't you just climb down into the baggage compartment like in Air Force One??

Don't know if this is doable, but even if it was, how would you get the cargo containers open (assuming wide-body jet), and how would you know which container the checked luggage is even in.
Captain Kevin
 
Whiteguy
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 10:57 pm

AirKevin wrote:
kjeld0d wrote:
BravoOne wrote:
Not at all. I have had several diversions on the North Atlantic for the the dumbest reasons like I left my cardiac pills in my checked luggage. Duh....

Can't you just climb down into the baggage compartment like in Air Force One??

Don't know if this is doable, but even if it was, how would you get the cargo containers open (assuming wide-body jet), and how would you know which container the checked luggage is even in.



No you can not access the cargo compartment....
 
TTailedTiger
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 11:21 pm

codyul wrote:
Only a doctor or similarly qualified medical professional can pronounce a death. If the crew was unfortunate enough not to have a doctor onboard then, as was previously mentioned, they would be required to perform CPR on the deceased until landing at an airport for medical professionals to take over.
This is definitely a possibility.


I never understood this. Sounds like a power trip from doctors. A trained flight attendant would certainly be capable of determining death.
 
nine4nine
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 11:32 pm

Let’s not forget the hazmat situation of a dead body once the muscles relax and the body purges.

When I was young I was on a UTA flight back in 88’ from PPT-LAX where a man in the center aisle seat about two rows up from me went cardiac about 4 hours into the flight. He passed and they covered his body in his seat with blankets. It was a very uncomfortable flight the next 4 hours just seeing a draped body sitting there while meals were served, movies played and especially the body movement in turbulence. Images I can still see visually in my mind.
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a36001
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Mon Jan 13, 2020 11:33 pm

I know this might sound awful, but not everyone can sit next to a deceased person for such a long flight. Even family members of the deceased might not be able to do this let alone strangers, especially if the flight is full and there is no where on the aircraft the deceased passenger can be moved to safely. You can't really move them to the galley floor and leave them unrestrained and putting them in the lav might be somewhat disrespectful. HNL to BNE is what 8 hours? Quite traumatic for all involved.
 
BravoOne
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 12:04 am

TTailedTiger wrote:
codyul wrote:
Only a doctor or similarly qualified medical professional can pronounce a death. If the crew was unfortunate enough not to have a doctor onboard then, as was previously mentioned, they would be required to perform CPR on the deceased until landing at an airport for medical professionals to take over.
This is definitely a possibility.


I never understood this. Sounds like a power trip from doctors. A trained flight attendant would certainly be capable of determining death.



I Think the legality of who can and cannot define death trumps your concept. Way to many opportunities to screw this up with follow on legal actions. trained FA? How would that work?
 
patrickjp93
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 12:27 am

codyul wrote:
Only a doctor or similarly qualified medical professional can pronounce a death. If the crew was unfortunate enough not to have a doctor onboard then, as was previously mentioned, they would be required to perform CPR on the deceased until landing at an airport for medical professionals to take over.
This is definitely a possibility.

Another absurd regulation. Has the person stopped breathing completely for 11 minutes straight and has their heart also not been beating that long? They're dead. It's 8 minutes of Oxygen depravation to brain death at normal body temperatures (to avoid the sticklers who'll bring up cryogenic preservation). 10 minutes you are long dead, so at 11 even a layman can pronounce death and be correct 100% of the time.

In terms of detecting if a person is dead during bouts of CPR, you really only need a cell phone. Once your nerves go dark, your electromagnetic field that makes touch screens work disappears.
 
patrickjp93
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 12:28 am

BravoOne wrote:
TTailedTiger wrote:
codyul wrote:
Only a doctor or similarly qualified medical professional can pronounce a death. If the crew was unfortunate enough not to have a doctor onboard then, as was previously mentioned, they would be required to perform CPR on the deceased until landing at an airport for medical professionals to take over.
This is definitely a possibility.


I never understood this. Sounds like a power trip from doctors. A trained flight attendant would certainly be capable of determining death.



I Think the legality of who can and cannot define death trumps your concept. Way to many opportunities to screw this up with follow on legal actions. trained FA? How would that work?

Considering a Doctor has no specialized equipment with them, see my previous post. Any layman can learn how to pronounce death correctly.
 
twicearound
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 12:45 am

patrickjp93 wrote:
BravoOne wrote:
TTailedTiger wrote:

I never understood this. Sounds like a power trip from doctors. A trained flight attendant would certainly be capable of determining death.



I Think the legality of who can and cannot define death trumps your concept. Way to many opportunities to screw this up with follow on legal actions. trained FA? How would that work?

Considering a Doctor has no specialized equipment with them, see my previous post. Any layman can learn how to pronounce death correctly.


Even on the ground a doctor has to do it. At least in the US/UK. Only a doctor can "call it" and has to sign off on the death certificate
 
TTailedTiger
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 12:53 am

patrickjp93 wrote:
codyul wrote:
Only a doctor or similarly qualified medical professional can pronounce a death. If the crew was unfortunate enough not to have a doctor onboard then, as was previously mentioned, they would be required to perform CPR on the deceased until landing at an airport for medical professionals to take over.
This is definitely a possibility.

Another absurd regulation. Has the person stopped breathing completely for 11 minutes straight and has their heart also not been beating that long? They're dead. It's 8 minutes of Oxygen depravation to brain death at normal body temperatures (to avoid the sticklers who'll bring up cryogenic preservation). 10 minutes you are long dead, so at 11 even a layman can pronounce death and be correct 100% of the time.

In terms of detecting if a person is dead during bouts of CPR, you really only need a cell phone. Once your nerves go dark, your electromagnetic field that makes touch screens work disappears.


Exactly. It's quite obvious.

If someone were to be obliterated in a turbine at a manufacturing plant would they need to call the doctor in to scoop up some remnants and see if it can be revived?
 
ASFlyer
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 1:12 am

I'm glad I work for an airline that would divert 100% of the time if someone expired during a flight if able to. We don't fly widebody aircraft on ULH flights - maybe that's the difference. My airline doesn't have any kind of "sleeping bag" to contain any body fluids lost as a result of one's death. We don't have any place to put anyone except the tight cabin of a 737 and, frankly, on a full flight I can't imagine anyone wanting to sit next to a dead body for 4-5 hours to avoid diverting. The callousness with which some have answered here is astonishing. It's not always about business - sometimes airlines actually do take compassion into consideration. Regardless of whether someone can be saved, the compassionate response would be to put a plane on the ground and let the professionals take charge - while letting the dead persons traveling companions grieve however they need to.
 
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aemoreira1981
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 1:36 am

Unless a doctor is on board, it has to be presumed that the passenger can be saved...thus the decision to divert to an airport with an actual healthcare system nearby. That said, I would have thought that a flight from Vancouver to Australia would have two complete sets of crews on board, with enough hours on one set to continue. (That said, AC35 and its return trip, AC36, are the longest routes on the Boeing 787-8 in the world.)
 
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zeke
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 2:03 am

ASFlyer wrote:
We don't fly widebody aircraft on ULH flights - maybe that's the difference.


You probably wouldn’t spend much of your time above maximum landing weight, and it sounds like you don’t fly international or over very hostile areas. Where would you want me to divert to if I’m over the North Pole ?

ASFlyer wrote:
My airline doesn't have any kind of "sleeping bag" to contain any body fluids lost as a result of one's death.


So at your airline they don’t have basic personal protective equipment for crew and passengers for a situation which has a probability of happening once or twice a month on a modest fleet size.

ASFlyer wrote:
The callousness with which some have answered here is astonishing. It's not always about business - sometimes airlines actually do take compassion into consideration.


It’s not “callousness”, we have a duty of care to all passengers onboard, and we do not put all passengers at risk for a non emergency.

aemoreira1981 wrote:
Unless a doctor is on board, it has to be presumed that the passenger can be saved...thus the decision to divert to an airport with an actual healthcare system nearby.


Diversion recommendations for medical issues for a passenger come from specialist aeromedical organisations on the ground, if someone can get treatment a diversion will be recommended, if there is an apparent death in flight a diversion would not recommended. The decision to act on the recommendation rests with the captain.

aemoreira1981 wrote:
That said, I would have thought that a flight from Vancouver to Australia would have two complete sets of crews on board, with enough hours on one set to continue. (That said, AC35 and its return trip, AC36, are the longest routes on the Boeing 787-8 in the world.)


No, one single augmented crew, and a diversion adds a sector which reduces the maximum duty limit.
Human rights lawyers are "ambulance chasers of the very worst kind.'" - Sky News
 
ltbewr
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 2:10 am

Where was the deceased and their family from ? Canada or Australia ? That might have been a factor in the diversion, especially if from Canada. A religious factor could be involved too, in particular the Jewish and Muslim faiths call for a prompt burial of the deceased, usually the next day. By diverting and processing, it might shorten the time needed to meet those goals.
I would also suggest as such a long flight and about midway, it was likely the most humane for all concerned to divert and remove the deceased and family with them.
 
WPvsMW
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 3:26 am

ICAO does not impose a "divert or not upon pax death enroute" rule... it's up to the operators to address the subject in an operator's Contract of Carriage. I can't recall seeing the subject addressed in any operator's CoC.
Google: contract of carriage death onboard diversion

For more background:
https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamain ... cle/775575

"Rotta et al. focused on pediatric fatalities on board of commercial aircraft. They reported that 6 out of 10 (60%) patients suffering in-flight death did not have any preexisting medical conditions and 9 out 10 (90%) were patients under the age of 2 years, so called lap infants."
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6286751/

Maritime operators use telemed to declare a death (anecdotal from two IMEs I know who do maritime telemed).
http://www.gard.no/web/updates/content/ ... the-answer
 
ASFlyer
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 4:49 am

zeke wrote:
You probably wouldn’t spend much of your time above maximum landing weight, and it sounds like you don’t fly international or over very hostile areas. Where would you want me to divert to if I’m over the North Pole ?


Which is why I said, "if they're able". In this particular case, they were able to land in Hawaii and they did. No reason not to - I'm sure most of the other passengers on the flight were not angry that they diverted to remove a dead passenger. In fact, I'm guessing, given the choice of sitting next to a dead person for another 10 hours or diverting, most people would be cool with diverting.

zeke wrote:
So at your airline they don’t have basic personal protective equipment for crew and passengers for a situation which has a probability of happening once or twice a month on a modest fleet size.


This is not my first airline - and I've been here for 20 years. We recently merged another airline into ours. Neither airline had a "sleeping bag" type of thing to put someones body in - nor have any of the airlines I've worked for previously - including a major international airline. All had "UPK's", none of which contained a body bag.

zeke wrote:
It’s not “callousness”, we have a duty of care to all passengers onboard, and we do not put all passengers at risk for a non emergency.

In this case, nobody was "at risk" by diverting to remove the deceased passenger and their traveling companions - but it was simply the right thing to do for everyone on the plane.
 
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zeke
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 6:17 am

ltbewr wrote:
Where was the deceased and their family from ? Canada or Australia ? That might have been a factor in the diversion, especially if from Canada. A religious factor could be involved too, in particular the Jewish and Muslim faiths call for a prompt burial of the deceased, usually the next day. By diverting and processing, it might shorten the time needed to meet those goals.
I would also suggest as such a long flight and about midway, it was likely the most humane for all concerned to divert and remove the deceased and family with them.


A passenger is not deceased until pronounced, that is why it is called an apparent death in flight. If they continued to BNE they would have only been pronounced soon after landing.

The diversion was not midway, more like 3/4, they were actually much closer to Nandi in Fiji, they turned around. They were only around 3 hrs flight time short of BNE by the time they landed in HNL. The flight time to HNL was the best part of 11 hours, when direct YVR-HNL is only around 5.

ASFlyer wrote:
No reason not to - I'm sure most of the other passengers on the flight were not angry that they diverted to remove a dead passenger. In fact, I'm guessing, given the choice of sitting next to a dead person for another 10 hours or diverting, most people would be cool with diverting.


You do realise that passengers that were diverted in HNL and do not have a US visa would have been detained ? I sure they are very happy with the outcome. Also the totally flight time back to HNL was closer to 11 hrs, they would have been only 3-4 hours from BNE. At that stage of the flight lots of passengers would have been asleep.

ASFlyer wrote:
This is not my first airline - and I've been here for 20 years. We recently merged another airline into ours. Neither airline had a "sleeping bag" type of thing to put someones body in - nor have any of the airlines I've worked for previously - including a major international airline. All had "UPK's", none of which contained a body bag.


That says more about how little the airline cares for its crew and passengers. How would you move a passenger that had an apparent death back to their seat ? Or is your airline one of the ones that just leaves them on the floor or stuffs them into a toilet and locks the door ?

The sleeping bag unzips, a passenger can be safely placed in it without lifting. On the outside it has lifting straps so multiple crew can safely lift and move a passenger without direct contact.

ASFlyer wrote:
In this case, nobody was "at risk" by diverting to remove the deceased passenger and their traveling companions - but it was simply the right thing to do for everyone on the plane.


Every diversion involves risk, fact that you cannot understand that speaks volumes. There is no evidence the traveling companions were allowed to stay with deceased, they would have need to meet immigration requirements. The article also didn’t say how many other people were detailed by immigration in HNL, passengers still need to meet visa requirements even for a diversion to be admitted into the USA.
Human rights lawyers are "ambulance chasers of the very worst kind.'" - Sky News
 
FGITD
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 6:50 am

ltbewr wrote:
Where was the deceased and their family from ? Canada or Australia ? That might have been a factor in the diversion, especially if from Canada. A religious factor could be involved too, in particular the Jewish and Muslim faiths call for a prompt burial of the deceased, usually the next day. By diverting and processing, it might shorten the time needed to meet those goals.


To put it simply...airline don't care. Your religion may request that you be buried asap, but...the airline also requested you not die on their plane, so you run on their time now.

It sounds callous, impersonal, or whatever you may want to call it...but an airline doesn't have feelings. Diversions cost a small fortune. Whether it be through rescue flights, hotels, crew rotation, missed connections, and having an airplane out of place. Bear in mind that an international aircraft rotation like this one isn't terminating in SYD. The irrops ripple effect is felt far and wide.

It’s unfortunate, it’s sad for those involved, but the world doesn’t stop because someone died on an airplane.
 
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cirrusdragoon
Posts: 196
Joined: Thu Feb 22, 2018 6:42 pm

Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 6:54 am

zeke wrote:
ltbewr wrote:
Where was the deceased and their family from ? Canada or Australia ? That might have been a factor in the diversion, especially if from Canada. A religious factor could be involved too, in particular the Jewish and Muslim faiths call for a prompt burial of the deceased, usually the next day. By diverting and processing, it might shorten the time needed to meet those goals.
I would also suggest as such a long flight and about midway, it was likely the most humane for all concerned to divert and remove the deceased and family with them.


A passenger is not deceased until pronounced, that is why it is called an apparent death in flight. If they continued to BNE they would have only been pronounced soon after landing.

The diversion was not midway, more like 3/4, they were actually much closer to Nandi in Fiji, they turned around. They were only around 3 hrs flight time short of BNE by the time they landed in HNL. The flight time to HNL was the best part of 11 hours, when direct YVR-HNL is only around 5.

ASFlyer wrote:
No reason not to - I'm sure most of the other passengers on the flight were not angry that they diverted to remove a dead passenger. In fact, I'm guessing, given the choice of sitting next to a dead person for another 10 hours or diverting, most people would be cool with diverting.


You do realise that passengers that were diverted in HNL and do not have a US visa would have been detained ? I sure they are very happy with the outcome. Also the totally flight time back to HNL was closer to 11 hrs, they would have been only 3-4 hours from BNE. At that stage of the flight lots of passengers would have been asleep.

ASFlyer wrote:
This is not my first airline - and I've been here for 20 years. We recently merged another airline into ours. Neither airline had a "sleeping bag" type of thing to put someones body in - nor have any of the airlines I've worked for previously - including a major international airline. All had "UPK's", none of which contained a body bag.


That says more about how little the airline cares for its crew and passengers. How would you move a passenger that had an apparent death back to their seat ? Or is your airline one of the ones that just leaves them on the floor or stuffs them into a toilet and locks the door ?

The sleeping bag unzips, a passenger can be safely placed in it without lifting. On the outside it has lifting straps so multiple crew can safely lift and move a passenger without direct contact.

ASFlyer wrote:
In this case, nobody was "at risk" by diverting to remove the deceased passenger and their traveling companions - but it was simply the right thing to do for everyone on the plane.


Every diversion involves risk, fact that you cannot understand that speaks volumes. There is no evidence the traveling companions were allowed to stay with deceased, they would have need to meet immigration requirements. The article also didn’t say how many other people were detailed by immigration in HNL, passengers still need to meet visa requirements even for a diversion to be admitted into the USA.


What are airline and in what country do you work for?
 
Whiteguy
Posts: 1548
Joined: Sat Nov 29, 2003 6:11 am

Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 7:07 am

zeke wrote:

The diversion was not midway, more like 3/4, they were actually much closer to Nandi in Fiji, they turned around. They were only around 3 hrs flight time short of BNE by the time they landed in HNL. The flight time to HNL was the best part of 11 hours, when direct YVR-HNL is only around 5.


The diversion back to HNL was probably more about operational considerations, having AC staff on the ground and access to many hotels vs Nandi.
 
WPvsMW
Posts: 2252
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Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 7:49 am

Who typically makes the final decision to divert if the CPT and flight-following/dispatcher/ops don't agree?
 
FluidFlow
Posts: 723
Joined: Wed Apr 10, 2019 6:39 am

Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 8:10 am

zeke wrote:
I don’t see the point in diverting for an apparent death in flight. Especially for a passenger with a known medical condition.


Was the medical condition known to the airline?

Depending on the actual cause of death and the knowledge of said it might be better to divert and get the other passengers out of the aircraft. The article only states that he was sick before but it does not state if AC knew of this and what his sickness was. Heart disease? No problem to fly on. Lung infection? Better not. If the family only revealed the sickness after he died to the crew they might have diverted to protect other passengers.

Also sometimes a lot of body fluid (not blood) is released upon death. If this happened before the body was secured for the rest of the flight it could have been pretty nasty in the cabin.
 
Zak748
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Jul 23, 2016 12:44 am

Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 9:28 am

I believe some airlines (SIA comes to mind) actually carry a fridge on certain aircraft / routes. There are certain destination pairs more popular with older generation travellers and chances are some will naturally die due to their age.These are averages, statistics and historic data that help airlines to incorporate their procedures.
 
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zeke
Posts: 15145
Joined: Thu Dec 14, 2006 1:42 pm

Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 10:33 am

WPvsMW wrote:
Who typically makes the final decision to divert if the CPT and flight-following/dispatcher/ops don't agree?


Captain

FluidFlow wrote:
Was the medical condition known to the airline?


It should be if you go into the conditions of carriage.

FluidFlow wrote:
Depending on the actual cause of death and the knowledge of said it might be better to divert and get the other passengers out of the aircraft.


Noumea, Port Vila, Nandi, Apia, and Pago Pago were the closer if that was the issue.

FluidFlow wrote:
Also sometimes a lot of body fluid (not blood) is released upon death. If this happened before the body was secured for the rest of the flight it could have been pretty nasty in the cabin.


I understand, we carry biohazard cleanup equipment and protective equipment for crew.
Human rights lawyers are "ambulance chasers of the very worst kind.'" - Sky News
 
FluidFlow
Posts: 723
Joined: Wed Apr 10, 2019 6:39 am

Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 11:20 am

zeke wrote:

FluidFlow wrote:
Was the medical condition known to the airline?


It should be if you go into the conditions of carriage.

FluidFlow wrote:
Depending on the actual cause of death and the knowledge of said it might be better to divert and get the other passengers out of the aircraft.


Noumea, Port Vila, Nandi, Apia, and Pago Pago were the closer if that was the issue.

FluidFlow wrote:
Also sometimes a lot of body fluid (not blood) is released upon death. If this happened before the body was secured for the rest of the flight it could have been pretty nasty in the cabin.


I understand, we carry biohazard cleanup equipment and protective equipment for crew.


Thanks for the answers, i did not know that the aircraft was already that far.

I understand that the condition should be known to the carrier but do people really disclose it every time, especially when it is an invisible condition.
 
Reddevil556
Posts: 222
Joined: Thu Dec 27, 2018 2:09 pm

Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 11:27 am

codyul wrote:
Only a doctor or similarly qualified medical professional can pronounce a death. If the crew was unfortunate enough not to have a doctor onboard then, as was previously mentioned, they would be required to perform CPR on the deceased until landing at an airport for medical professionals to take over.
This is definitely a possibility.


That is technically not true, if there are obvious signs of death than someone like a flight crew can make that call. Instances like; decapitation, rigor mortis, and other obvious signs of death. This is more the legal stand point, airlines most likely have a policy in effect that they don’t make the declaration themselves.
Jumped out of: C130H, C130J, C17A, C212, CH47, and UH60. Bucket list: C160, A400, C2
 
fraT
Posts: 1174
Joined: Wed Oct 01, 2003 4:32 am

Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 2:00 pm

zeke wrote:
The diversion was not midway, more like 3/4, they were actually much closer to Nandi in Fiji, they turned around. They were only around 3 hrs flight time short of BNE by the time they landed in HNL. The flight time to HNL was the best part of 11 hours, when direct YVR-HNL is only around 5.


From what I can see on Flightradar24, the flight was actually closer to HNL than to Fiji at the time they turned around.
 
Armadillo1
Posts: 560
Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2017 5:14 pm

Re: AC35 diverts to HNL after passenger dies onboard.

Tue Jan 14, 2020 2:11 pm

so who will be guilty if a mistake happens and "apparent death" become not so apparent (deep coma, etc)?

even sertified doctors made this kind of mistakes

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