Four Passengers Faint On Washington-to-Chicago Flight Diverted to Dayton, Ohio

A plane en route from Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport to Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport was diverted to Dayton International Airport in Ohio after two flight attendants reported dizziness and four passengers fainted.

American Airlines Flight 547 was diverted to Dayton International Airport Friday morning after passengers complained about air quality and four fainted. Oxygen masks were dropped in the cabin of the Boeing 737-800.

A new pilot was called in to complete the flight, which was continued on an MD-82 to O’Hare International Airport.

American Airlines is investigating. No cause has been identified at this early stage in the aftermath of the incident.

Historically, controversy exists over the possibility of air quality problems in airline cabins. Some claim the method of heating cabin air from bleed air is a source of trouble in jet aircraft and turboprop aircraft. The new Boeing 787 Dreamliner does not use bleed air for heating. Instead the aircraft has electric supplied heat for cabin heaters and Goodrich heated floor panels.

Two airline labor unions have claimed that flight crews have been impaired or incapacitated on a number of occasions, following exposure to fumes during flight. On November 5, 2000, both the pilot and co-pilot of a Jersey European Airways BAe 146 became ill while landing at Birmingham International Airport.

Aerotoxic syndrome is a term describing the alleged short-term and long-term ill-health effects that are attributed to exposure to aircraft cabin air that has been contaminated with atomized engine oils and other chemicals.

Opponents of the existence of Aerotoxic Syndrome claim that aircraft cabin air has lower levels of chemical and biological contaminant that some regular office air or other workplace environments.

Excerpt from a documentary by Tim van Beveren investigating fume events, tricresyl phosphate (TCP) and talking to researchers and pilots affected by the fumes. First broadcast on the German TV programme Markt on March 9, 2009. English language version.

AA Flight 547 track on …

See also …
Aerotoxic Association —