SkyWest Pilot Rapidly Descends Passenger Jet After Unconscious Passenger Cause Mistakenly Interpreted As Cabin Pressure Problem

SkyWest Flight 5622 was diverted to Buffalo, New York, after a passenger lost consciousness, an airline official told CNN. The flight landed safely in Buffalo.

A SkyWest Airlines pilot dove a passenger jet from 20,000 feet to 10,000 feet in a few minutes to fix what he thought was a cabin pressure problem. When a passenger lost consciousness on the Chicago-to-Hartford flight, a miscommunication caused the pilot to believe he needed to correct cabin pressure by taking the aircraft down to 10,000 feet.

An additional 15 adults and two children were evaluated after the aircraft landed in Buffalo, New York, but none required treatment, and their discomfort was likely related to the stress of the aircraft’s dive that fast as 7,000 feet per minute.

The aircraft was checked after landing and no indications of pressurization problems were discovered.


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