Three Emergency Evacuations In A Week Causes Significant Concerns

Problems On Two Thomas Cook Boeing Aircraft And One Operated By Jet2


Lawyers representing passengers injured during the emergency evacuation of a Thomas Cook flight at Glasgow Airport last Thursday (October 11th) have expressed concerns after two similar incidents today (October 19th), including one involving the same operator and another at the same airport.

Reports have emerged of passengers being injured during the evacuation of a Boeing 737 operated by Jet2 at Glasgow Airport, which was forced to abort its takeoff for a flight to Alicante when smoke was detected in the cabin.

Flights to and from the airport were suspended following the incident on flight LS177, which was carrying 189 passengers.

Hours later, it has been reported that another Thomas Cook flight, this time involving a Boeing 767 taking passengers from Manchester to Tenerife was forced to make a diversion to  Dublin due to smoke in the cabin.

These latest events bear striking similarities to an incident at Glasgow Airport last week, when a Boeing 757-200 operated by Thomas Cook and flying from Dalaman, Turkey was subject to an emergency evacuation after it landed at Glasgow Airport due to smoke on board. A number of passengers had to leave the aircraft via emergency chutes.

Aviation law experts at Irwin Mitchell have already been retained to represent a number of passengers injured in the Thomas Cook incident last week. The law firm has offices in cities including Glasgow and Manchester.

Jim Morris, a former Boeing pilot and Partner in the aviation law team at Irwin Mitchell, has vast experience in acting for passengers injured in air accidents of all kinds, as well as the families of those killed in incidents in the UK and abroad.

Commenting on this latest incident, he said: “The events seen today, with passengers sadly being injured, are obviously hugely disturbing. For there to be three such similar events within a matter of a few days of each other, with all of the incidents involving Boeing aircraft and with two of them occurring in Glasgow causes significant concerns.

“The Air Accident Investigation Branch (AAIB) will be carefully investigating the cause of each incident and an important aspect will be for them to determine if there are any similarities or links between them all.

“We urge the AAIB to carry out their investigations thoroughly and quickly with the early publication of an interim and then a final report.

"The hundreds of passengers affected by these three flights, particularly those suffering injury, will want to know exactly what went wrong. At the same time everyone is keen to ensure that any underlying faults are identified and resolved as soon as possible for the safety of future passengers and crew.

“Several of our clients from the Thomas Cook flight last week have given worrying accounts of their experiences, with concerns not only about the need for the emergency evacuation but also the way in which the evacuation process was supervised, with some passengers suffering physical injury during this.

“All of our clients want lessons to be learned and they also want justice to be done. Both airlines involved have strict legal duties to compensate passengers for physical injuries sustained during a flight including disembarkation or evacuation even where the airline is not at fault. At the same, time if the aircraft or any of its components are faulty and this was the cause of the problems, the manufacturers may also be liable for civil claims for damages.” 

Morris added that the huge impact of such incidents on the passengers involved cannot be underestimated.

He explained: “We would urge passengers who inhaled smoke or fumes to seek medical advice as soon as possible, as it is well known that certain gases and fumes from combustion of substances or oils in an aircraft can contain dangerous toxins which can have an adverse and lasting effect on people who are exposed to them.

"As well as investigations by the AAIB, we will be undertaking our own assessment of what has gone wrong in the Glasgow and Dublin incidents and we are keen to speak to passengers on board all of the flights and any other witnesses."

Among those passengers represented by Irwin Mitchell, Craig Gourlay, 35, from Lanarkshire, who was on the Thomas Cook flight at Glasgow Airport last week with his wife and four-year-old son, said: “'The fact that accidents which are so similar have happened within a week doesn't fill me with confidence. 

“I would have put this down to a freak accident which doesn't happen very often but for this to happen again is very scary and makes me anxious to fly.”