A FORMER flight attendant has said she suffered serious health problems after being “poisoned” by toxic fumes while working for British Airways.
Trudie Dadd, 56, said she had suffered “unbelievable fatigue” as a result and has also had problems with her memory and stomach, according to The Sun.
A veteran of 20 years with British Airways, she also claimed to have experienced episodes of confusion and numbness in her feet after being exposed to the fumes twice in 12 months.
The Sunday Times reports that four UK airlines are being sued by 74 cabin crew workers who said they were also exposed to contaminated air while working.
They are being represented by Unite, a trade union, with more than 60 of the cases involving individuals working for British Airways. The other airlines being sued are Virgin Atlantic, easyJet and Jet2.
Leaked figures showed that there were at least 292 incidents of fumes or smoke inside aircraft operated by British carriers between June 2014 and May 2015.
Howard Beckett, who works for Unite, said: “It is a health issue which the airline industry has been aware of for some time and is so serious that our members are likening it to the impact of asbestos on the building industry.”
Trudie, from Berkshire (west of London), left British Airways in September and explained the difficulties she suffered after being exposed to the fumes, which she said smelled like bad feet mixed with nail polish remover, in April last year.
She said: “Over the next few months my health really started to deteriorate badly … I couldn’t remember simple things [like] people’s names … I was in a fog, I just wasn’t functioning.”
Trudie, who had dreamt of being a flight attendant since she was a little girl, had to spend two weeks ill in bed after being exposed to similar fumes the year before.
Following her difficulties last year, she had private health tests done and was recommended not to fly for six months so she could get her health back.
Trudie reported the toxic fume incidents to British Airways but wasn’t asked about it afterwards and slammed the airline for not recognising the issue. She said: “In their eyes it doesn’t happen.”
She added: “I have had to leave a job that I loved — a job I wanted to do since the age of 10. I am very angry that I have had to take that decision.”
In a statement British Airways said it would not operate an aircraft “if we believed it posed a health or safety risk to our customers or crew”.
The UK national carrier added: “We always encourage our colleagues to report any potential safety incidents to allow us to investigate them, and all reports are shared with the CAA.”
This article originally appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission.
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