Toxic air in aircraft concern
March 28th, 2011 by elisa

In an article in today’s Metro newspaper a former pilot has claimed that people are getting ‘seriously sick’ from poisonous air escaping into aircraft cabins.

Since 2006 there have been seven incidents where toxic substances have been proved to have leaked somewhere into an aircraft that have been reported to the Civil Aviation Authority and one incident reported to Balpa. There were also 270 incidents of oil leakage with fumes entering into the cabin recorded by the CAA. These were explained by a Balpa spokesperson to happen because air goes through the engine and into the cabin, however the next generation of aircraft will function differently.

Dr Susan Michaelis, who flew for a regional division of Qantas has completed a PhD on the subject and believes she became ill as a result of exposure to toxic fumes. She believes that cockpits should be fitted with fume detectors.

Ministers claim that these events are rare, a spokesperson for the Department for Transport said: “Cabin fume events are exceptionally rare, occurring on a tiny fraction of flights, and the results of this research will help us decide what action – if any – is necessary.”


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