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AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Thu Jan 28, 2016 7:28 am
by ordell
It sounds like something in the AC system. Not like a food-borne illness could do this.

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news...rlines-flight-aa109-london-7258343

Mystery surrounds an unknown illness which has spread though a passenger jet and forced it to turn round.

Up to seven of 13 crew members and "many passengers" were struck down with the strange disease - but at this stage no one knows what it is.

A British passenger has described panic on board the American Airlines flight from London Heathrow to LAX a when crew asked if there was a doctor on board.

A spokesman for the airline said there was "medical emergency" and people on the flight were "ill" but had no other information.

Flight AA109 was close to Keflavik, a town in southwest Iceland, when crew declared a medical emergency and decided to head back to London.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Thu Jan 28, 2016 9:45 am
by Lofty
On touch down the Flight Crew reported 3 Cabin Crew and 3 Passengers, this may have increased after arrival.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Thu Jan 28, 2016 9:52 am
by liquidair
Cabin pressure perhaps? Plus, sounds like main people involved were standing- pilots were fine. Simultaneous drop in blood pressure? Weird.

But if it were air quality wouldn't more have been affected?

Found this study reported in BBC - could be related?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/1024811.stm

[Edited 2016-01-28 02:28:12]

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Thu Jan 28, 2016 10:18 am
by Byrdluvs747
Quoting ordell (Thread starter):
Not like a food-borne illness could do this.

Why not? That article said nothing about how it was spread. Sounds like something consumed to me.

Quoting ordell (Thread starter):
Up to seven of 13 crew members...
.
.
.
Flight AA109 was close to Keflavik, a town in southwest Iceland, when crew declared a medical emergency and decided to head back to London.

Here's my question. If an unknown contaminant or pathogen is rapidly affecting crew members, 50% in this case, why did they fly all the way back to LHR instead of landing at KEF? It seems to me that the priority should be to get the plane on the ground as fast as possible.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Thu Jan 28, 2016 12:08 pm
by DiscoverCSG
Maybe they figured out that only the people who had the fish were sick.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Thu Jan 28, 2016 1:04 pm
by mjoelnir
Quoting ordell (Thread starter):
Flight AA109 was close to Keflavik, a town in southwest Iceland, when crew declared a medical emergency and decided to head back to London.

If something serious was happening, why fly 2 to 3 hours back to London instead of landing in KEF?

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Thu Jan 28, 2016 1:29 pm
by nc3rd
Could've been over max landing weight still. Rather than holding and dumping fuel it would be better to fly back to London for more facilities for re accommodations and medical care.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Thu Jan 28, 2016 2:06 pm
by SuperSix2
Aircraft involved seems to be doing a test flight now

https://www.flightradar24.com/AAL9677/8a87561



[Edited 2016-01-28 06:10:44]

[Edited 2016-01-28 06:11:36]

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Thu Jan 28, 2016 2:11 pm
by winginit
It was seven flight attendants and three customers. Interestingly even though paramedics responded onboard once the plane had returned to LHR, no one reportedly required medical attention once everyone had deplaned.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Thu Jan 28, 2016 3:08 pm
by mjoelnir
Quoting nc3rd (Reply 6):
Could've been over max landing weight still. Rather than holding and dumping fuel it would be better to fly back to London for more facilities for re accommodations and medical care.

If you have a serious medical emergency you land overweight and after 3 hours flight they should be not that much over max landing weight. You have the University of Iceland Hospital in Reykjavik and a Hospital in Keflavik.
I imagine that the medical emergency was not that critical.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 2:27 am
by YYZFAN
Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 5):
If something serious was happening, why fly 2 to 3 hours back to London instead of landing in KEF?

As others have noted, the aircraft may have been overweight and the time it would take to dump the fuel you can get back to LHR. AA has extensive ops there, and can easily re-accommodate other paxs.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 9):
If you have a serious medical emergency you land overweight and after 3 hours flight they should be not that much over max landing weight. You have the University of Iceland Hospital in Reykjavik and a Hospital in Keflavik.
I imagine that the medical emergency was not that critical.

Sounds like you really wanted an AA 777 to land at KEF. The flight crew, along with ops, medical consultants (possibly), and any onboard physician(s), determined it was safe and not of detriment to return to LHR.

What a peculiar response to a routine diversion/return to airport.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 12:39 pm
by mjoelnir
Quoting YYZFAN (Reply 10):
Sounds like you really wanted an AA 777 to land at KEF. The flight crew, along with ops, medical consultants (possibly), and any onboard physician(s), determined it was safe and not of detriment to return to LHR.

What a peculiar response to a routine diversion/return to airport.

If you would have critical sick patients you do not fly 3 hours more, if you have good hospitals available near the airport you are circling over and that airplane was over Keflavik. If that decision was not because the patients were not that critical and could wait, than that was one of the most harebrained decision I can imagine.

What a peculiar view you have of medical emergency. If you would have a very sick child in your car you would drive passed the university hospital you are beside and go for a 3 hours drive, because ...?

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 7:16 pm
by VSlover
AA904 diverted for same reason too?

unfortunate timing.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...engers-suffer-mystery-illness.html

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 8:06 pm
by winginit
Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 11):
If you would have critical sick patients you do not fly 3 hours more

All those inflicted declined to go to the hospital after being checked out onboard by a paramedic upon landing in LHR. Clearly the situation was in no way critical that being the case.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Sat Jan 30, 2016 1:54 am
by N62NA
Quoting VSlover (Reply 12):
AA904 diverted for same reason too?

unfortunate timing.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti....html

I just saw this too. Twice in less than a week? Something doesn't seem right here.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Sat Jan 30, 2016 2:19 am
by Sylus
Some media outlets are suggesting contamination of the air supply, my first thoughts were carbon monoxide poisoning? It causes dizziness, feeling faint etc..

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Sat Jan 30, 2016 3:09 am
by stlgph
im thinking something was wrong with the flight attendant, others with a light stomach saw it and followed suit when the flight attendant fainted.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Sat Jan 30, 2016 4:57 am
by OMP777X
Quoting stlgph (Reply 16):
im thinking something was wrong with the flight attendant, others with a light stomach saw it and followed suit when the flight attendant fainted.

On both flight AA109 and flight AA904? I have seen bad turbulence lead to chain vomiting on a flight before, but these incidents seem to have involved something more insidious than that. What do you suppose made the FA vomit and pass out? Whatever went on in those 777's is strange indeed.

Best,

OMP777X



  

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Sat Jan 30, 2016 10:19 am
by stlgph
Quoting OMP777X (Reply 17):

She could vomit and pass out from any number of reasons.
Many folks are uneasy flyers to begin with and how many of them hit the bar or the booze before they go or pop in pills to help them sleep?
Add to that the sight of someone throwing up and you have yourselves a kindergarten class.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Sun Jan 31, 2016 10:59 am
by Lofty
The emergency call was suspected carbon monoxide poisoning on landing the flight crew reported as the Flight Attendants where incapacitated! and requested immediate taxi to stand. As with all full emergencies the fire service followed the aircraft and boarded once it was parked.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Sun Jan 31, 2016 1:51 pm
by YYZFAN
Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 11):
What a peculiar view you have of medical emergency. If you would have a very sick child in your car you would drive passed the university hospital you are beside and go for a 3 hours drive, because ...?

It would depend on how critical the situation is. Clearly this situation was not. Aircraft have landed overwieght and quickly when they have needed to. This situation did not require that.

Seems your Icelandic pride has taken a hit because an airplane chose to divert back to LHR instead of your precious KEF.

Get over it.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Sun Jan 31, 2016 2:21 pm
by FlyingColours
Quoting YYZFAN (Reply 20):
Seems your Icelandic pride has taken a hit because an airplane chose to divert back to LHR instead of your precious KEF.

Get over it.

That's a bit on the harsh side, Personally I was wondering the same thing as while if it was a critical (as in pax or crew on the floor with the defib being used) they would obviously have landed at KEF, though I would have thought it would have been prudent to get down ASAP still given that a number of people were suffering from the same symptoms and given it's source couldn't be pinpointed at the time and no way of knowing if more people including the guys up front were next.

That said, perhaps they were thinking along the line of containment as in if it was something that was contagious then getting the flight back to it's origin reduces the risk of spreading it. In the end we know it was not much more than a non-event but there is nothing wrong with being a bit puzzled about descisions made on the day.

Maybe I should be insulted that MAN didn't get an AA 777 as they flew overhead enroute to Heathrow  

Phil
FlyingColours

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Sun Jan 31, 2016 2:34 pm
by DTWPurserBoy
Quoting N62NA (Reply 14):
just saw this too. Twice in less than a week? Something doesn't seem right here.

Every major airline has medical diversions every single day. Not all of them make it to the press. I bet I have had over 50 in my career. But these days it seems everyone has CNN on speed dial.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Sun Jan 31, 2016 9:26 pm
by ordell
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2016/01/28/mysterious-illness-causes-fainting-and-panic-forcing-american-airlines-flight-to-turn-around/

WaPo says jet engine fumes in the cabin.

RE: AA In-flight Illness Forces Return

Posted: Mon Feb 01, 2016 10:57 am
by Lofty
This was not a normal medical diversion it was declared a "Full Emergency" and as such was met on landing by the Fire Service, not normal for a Medical.

London Ambulance would have activated their major incident protocol as it was reported as Multiple Casualties.

The number of people being affected would have slowly increased so when the decision to return to London was taken you may have just had a sick cabin crew member, as time goes by you start having more people becoming effected.