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Passenger breathing problems remain months after British Airways flight

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Passenger breathing problems remain months after British Airways flight

Passengers who travelled on a British Airways flight to Valencia two months ago, have reported that they continue to experience breathing problems, after the cabin suddenly filled with a ‘chemical’ type smoke shortly before undertaking an emergency landing.

Some passengers who have never experienced any previous breathing difficulties state that they now struggle with simple tasks such as walking up hill, and even comment that their performance at the gym has deteriorated, all since the smoke in the cabin. It is not yet known exactly what the passengers inhaled whilst on the plane, and questions have been raised about the general maintenance of the aircraft they were on. It has been reported that some of those passengers have sought medical assistance from their GP and respiratory specialists.

The air that we breathe when we are on an aeroplane comes into the cabin by the engines, where it is then compressed before flowing into the cabin. It is felt that something must have gone wrong with this process, either in respect of an oil or fluid leak, which had then contaminated the air supply. Whatever the circumstances, passengers want answers, particularly given that their breathing and general wellness has now been affected because of what should have been a normal, routine, flight.

It is reported that a similar incident happened on a flight to Gatwick in early October 2019, and again on board a flight into Heathrow, however there is no evidence to support that these events are linked, and by no means confined to UK airlines. It is alleged that there have also been reports of fume leaks in aircraft cabins in both USA and Australia, with Dr Jonathan Burdon, Australian Physician and Respiratory Specialist, stating that he treats hundreds of cabin crew and pilots each year, which he believes are all “chronologically linked to a fume event.”

In any event, it would seem that these type of episodes require further investigation, and explanation, in order to prevent them happening again.

As a firm, we help clients who have suffered various lung related problems as a result of negligence by a third party, whether it be a former employer, or something else. If you have ever experienced any problems like this, and are looking to speak to somebody about it, we have a team of dedicated professionals who will be able to help. 

By Helen Livesey, personal injury department

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