Officials at American Airlines said today that one of their fights bound for Los Angeles was forced to return to London’s Heathrow Airport Wednesday after at least six people on board fell ill. A British newspaper reported that one member of the planes cabin crew appeared ill and fainted while five others complained about feeling unwell. At the time the plane was flying over southwest Iceland, but rather than land there, the captain decided to return to Heathrow.
An American Airlines spokesperson confirmed that two passengers and “some of our flight attendants” complained of feeling lightheaded aboard Flight 109. The plane took off from Heathrow at 12:05 p.m. local time Wednesday (7:05 a.m. EST). The airline’s spokesperson also said early Thursday that the aircraft was being inspected by maintenance engineers.
Authorities said that paramedics and fire crews surrounded the plane as it landed approximately five hours after it had taken off. A local paper reported that the passengers’ luggage was briefly taken away for inspection before being returned to them later.
“About 2.5 hours into the flight just as we were passing Iceland we had an announcement asking for any doctors, nurses or medical professionals on board to report to the boarding doors to assist with unwell passengers,” one of the passenger, Lee Gunn told The Daily Mirror. “The lights then came on in the cabin and there was lots of commotion.”
“Eventually, when we did dock, there was only one person who came on and he was monitoring the air,” passenger Alan Gray told The Daily Mail. “Then the paramedics were allowed onboard to treat those who were ill and everybody was let off.”
A captain with the London Fire Brigade said that “crews investigating the plane found no evidence of hazardous substances.” Later an employee of the London Ambulance Service said that six patients who complained of feeling unwell when the plane landed were examined, then discharged.
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Authorities are still not sure what caused so many people to feel ill during the flight.
Ed. note: This event could be connected to the Wigner Effect caused by Fukushima radiation, last year Christina Consuelo aka RadChick and Leuren Moret did an outstanding report on what appear to be radiation related anomalys causing plane crashes, illnesses among flight attendants and more. See report here: http://wp.me/p17PKt-84H