- British Airways’ head of in-flight safety said cabin fumes can be toxic
- Mark Mannering-Smith wrote the message on an internal online forum
- He wrote the crew can be hurt by fumes which can ‘incapacitate’ flyers
The head of in-flight safety for British Airways has admitted that passengers can be ‘incapacitated’ by toxic fumes on planes.
Mark Mannering-Smith reportedly wrote on an internal online forum that cabin fumes can be toxic and therefore hurt crew and travellers.
His comments which were posted on the internet have since been deleted, but were saved by BA staff, reports The Sun on Sunday.
The head of in-flight safety for British Airways has admitted passengers can be ‘incapacitated’ by toxic fumes on planes
Customers on board the flight will not have the same protection by using the oxygen masks which drop down during an emergency, according to the paper.
A senior BA source told the newspaper’s Stephen Moyes: ‘Oxygen comes from tanks in the hold.
‘But the masks they use are designed to allow cabin air in so they do not provide protection from fumes.’
The condition relating to breathing in cabin air is known as ‘aerotoxic syndrome’.
She argued that 412 crew members – some aged in their 20s and 30s – had died between 2006 and 2014.
The former employee added that she does not suggest ‘aerotoxic syndrome’ was the main cause of every death, but instead added it was simply a factor.
A BA spokesman said: ‘We fly more than 100,000 people routinely every day and would never operate a flight unless it was safe to do so.
‘Our crews are trained to deal with every circumstance in the cabin and our safety equipment and training exceed required industry standards.’
Customers on board the flight will not have the same protection by using the oxygen masks which drop down during an emergency, it has been claimed
It comes after a pilot on a London-bound BA flight was forced to land in Vancouver, Canada, after the pilot complained of ‘toxic fumes’ on the plane.
The Airbus A380, which had left from San Francisco, had to turn around after staff members fell ill and make an emergency landing.
In an audio recording, obtained by ABC News, a pilot, having been asked what the problem was by air traffic control, responded: ‘Toxic fumes, toxic gas type fumes’.
The airline was tight-lipped about the cause of the emergency, which happened on a flight with more than 400 passengers on board.
A statement from BA simply said: ‘We are investigating, and this will form part of our investigation.’