An American Airlines flight was forced to make an emergency landing after a cleaning solvent spilled onboard, knocking out two flight attendants and causing itchy, watery eyes for passengers.
American Airlines Flight 729 was scheduled to fly Monday from London’s Heathrow Airport to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. However, the plane was forced to make an emergency landing in Dublin, Ireland after a cleaning agent was spilled in the aircraft’s lavatory.
According to reports, the cleaning solvent was left behind by Heathrow cleaners accidentally and was knocked over upon takeoff. The liquid was never identified, but it must have been extremely caustic. After seeping into the cabin’s carpet, the fumes were enough to cause two of the flight crew to lose consciousness for a period of time and cause itchy, watery eyes and running noses for many passengers.
Audio of the radio chatter between Flight 729’s captain and Dublin air traffic control revealed the severity of the situation.
"We require paramedics to come on board the airplane and render immediate assistance," the captain can be heard requesting from Dublin. "We've had two of our flight crew staff made, excuse me, the cabin staff have actually lost consciousness, but I think they're back to a state of consciousness just now and there are general complaints about burning eyes and skin problems."
Upon arrival at Dublin, paramedics arrived to see to the care of the two crew members that were knocked out and another passenger who was experiencing respiratory distress. All three were taken to hospital for observation but have since been released.
After their ordeal, a replacement flight was scheduled the following morning to take stranded passengers from Dublin to Philadelphia. The impromptu stay was likely a hardship, but it was certainly better than being trapped on a plane flying over the Atlantic with a toxic chemical slowly being released into the craft’s oxygen supply.