As non aircrew still continue to claim that there is ‘no evidence’ that human exposure to toxic oil fumes in a confined space causes ill health – it has been decided to publish a series of 6 blogs on how a BAe 146 pilot eventually discovered the cause of his severe chronic ill health.
John Hoyte was a commercial pilot for nearly 30 years and co-authored ‘Aerotoxic Syndrome: Aviation’s Darkest Secret’ published by Pilot Press in 2014. His blogs will be published once a month over the next five months – concluding on Sunday 22nd May 2016 @ 1700 UTC with a ‘Statement’ held by a lawyer since 2007. The blog will expose what happens to professional aircrew when they are grounded with chronic ill health. As passengers (including children) breathe the same air, they too experience identical ill health.
Previous Blogs are here.
As I waited for the UCL study results, disbelief began to form quickly in my mind.
Had we all really been poisoned? Could it have been that whilst we had been flying hard all our lives, those who were supposed to be protecting us had failed to do so? It was an inconvenient, harsh truth to face.
I and others even got sudden calls from UCL “Was I a tobacco smoker?” No.
I was anxious to find out what had happened. As ever with these matters, it was a tense time but had been dragging on for three long months by now. Not knowing was half of the problem and added to the general mood of disbelief.
Captain Tristan Loraine informed me and others that the results of the UCL study had come through. The results were anonymous (we received nine sheets of A4 made into a larger sheet held together with sellotape) but in fact you could tell one’s own results, as we all got individual personal reports. It was like looking at a complex ingredients label of a standard food container.
The study of 27 pilots excluded 9 pilots from its conclusions, on the basis that their performance could have been a result of pre-existing psychological factors and had been caused by aspects other than toxic chemicals.
But what was most disturbing was that the blood/fat tests showed that every single one of the 27 pilots (100%) had a cocktail of toxic chemicals in their bodies. And that every pilot had underperformed on the cognitive testing against controls.
These chemicals included organophosphates, and they showed up in the body fat tests that Tristan had paid for. In other words, had it not been for Tristan’s willingness to use his own money, none of us would have ever known.
This evidence was extremely scary to learn, but it was also a relief. For over 16 years I had been suffering from severe neurological symptoms, but now I knew that those symptoms were absolutely not the result of so called ‘chronic stress ‘or long hours, but simply – exposure to very toxic chemicals.
I now felt increasingly angry. I realised that it was not about getting personal compensation, as we had jointly identified a very serious cause of ill health and as professional aircrew we had a basic duty to stop the wide scale poisoning of other humans in the future.
Q: How would you react if 100% of all test results showed that everyone had suffered from chemical poisoning but that there was official doubt?
NEXT Blogs: ‘Toxic Air Conclusions’ – to be published during May 2016.