Experts Call For Answers Over Smoke Incident On US Airways Flight

Plane Diverted Following Problems

16.08.2011

Aviation safety experts at Irwin Mitchell have urged aviation authorities to provide reassurances that an incident which resulted in smoke entering the cabin of a US Airways flight will not be repeated.

Four flight attendants were hospitalised following the incident on Flight 749, which was travelling from Madrid to Charlotte, North Carolina but had to divert to Boston’s Logan International Airport as a precautionary measure.

Reports have also revealed that the aircraft involved – a Boeing 767 – was taken out of service following the incident.

Aviation law experts at Irwin Mitchell, based in offices in England and Spain, act for people injured in air accidents around the world, as well as the families of those who have lost loved ones in such incidents.

Jim Morris, a former RAF pilot and Partner in the team, welcomed the news that the plane was no longer in use but urged authorities to work quickly to investigate how the smoke problem happened.

He explained: “Having represented people injured in toxic fumes incidents on Boeing 767 aircraft, it is important not to underestimate the long-term effects of such exposures. Inhaling toxins, such as organophosphates, from a smoke event can cause very serious lung and neurological injuries that are not immediately obvious at first, but can have devastating consequences in the long run.

“There is a clear need to investigate this issue and how it could have come about.  One possible cause could be due to the fact that the Boeing 767 cabin is pressurised by hot bleed air from the engine core.  It is possible that faulty oil seals allowed engine oil to leak into this bleed air resulting in smoke with a potentially high concentration of toxins.”

“Every possible avenue needs to be considered through the course of the inquiry and it is fundamental, for the sake of those who have suffered smoke-related injuries, that answers are provided into what happened and how it can be avoided in the future.”