View Full Version : Sunburnt on the Flightdeck
20th Jul 2011, 13:46
A new experience for me and I wondered if anyone else has suffered from this?
After a 2 sector day, both of which had the sunshine on my side the whole time, my left lower arm and back of my left hand sunburnt! I look like a taxi driver!
In 15 years I've never had this reaction before. Any comments?
20th Jul 2011, 14:49
It's possible that the sun burn could be as a result of the decrease of melanin in the skin as advanced old age creeps up. There's also some correlation between melanin and the onset of Parkinsons disease but that's a little complicated and unlikely to have much relevance. Another cause for this strangely lop sided sun burn might be that perhaps you went to sleep for a significant portion of the flights with your elbow propped against the window slide and your head in the cupped palm of your hand. Of course, had you been awake and a line training captain, you could have toasted the other side on the cruise home.
Hope that helps.
23rd Jul 2011, 04:18
Go to a retired pilots reunion in Australia, and they look like Swiss cheese! The dermatologists have made a fortune attacking these pilots skin cancers. Always use a SP 30 on face and arms, or you will join them.
31st Jul 2011, 08:20
Mmmm here's me thinking all along that glass prevented UV rays from getting through. Are you sure the sunburn came from this, and not from your layover?
btw. mentioning Parkinson's in this thread (above) was ridiculous. It's no more relevant to your question than saying your sunburn may be related to a previously undiagnosed undescended third testicle.
31st Jul 2011, 11:24
Lofo 101, Hi.
I work for Ryanair mate, no layovers involved ever!
UK to Kos, 4 hours, southbound, sun on my left arm the whole way. 25 minute turnaround then return to UK. Northbound again sun on me the whole way.
About half way home I felt as if my arm was burning but discounted that as possible because in 15 years never experienced sunburn before.
Next morning left forearm sunburnt and back of left hand covered in heat rash pimples and also burnt! Irritation only reducing now.
I too thought the glass gave some protection and I'm sure it does. Has anyone else ever had this reaction?
31st Jul 2011, 15:35
Plain glass only stops UVB rays, which commonly cause sunburn on the surface of the skin. However, glass does not stop UVA rays, which penetrate deeper into the skin and which cause much more skin damage.
Anyone who has lived for extended periods in a hot sunny climate, such as Outback Australia, or the Middle East, or any similar climatic region, knows full well that you can get sunburnt through untinted glass.
You would be well advised to use SPF30 rated sunscreen on exposed skin, or carry some tinted material that you can position between you and the sun, on the window.
31st Jul 2011, 18:49
Spent more than a few years flying around Africa and always wore a cotton content long sleeve shirt with the cuffs turned back. Sometimes a little warm perhaps but never an unintentional sunburn and no Parkinsons either although Alzheimers appears to be on its relentless way. Did I say the sunburn could have been caused by a third undescended testicle or was it an undescended third testicle? It's of no consequence because either way I'll bet they're jolly painful when they shake.
31st Jul 2011, 20:47
have you had exactly the same setup before? I mean:
- Same machine, not type of. Same piece of plane.
- Same route, same duration of sun exposure.
- Same amount of sun rays in the - say - 24-48 hours before.
If so, you can rule out that it was a factor from the outside.
This would leave the, improbable but not impossible, chance of a strange medical condition as said before: testicle, parkinson, diabetes etc...
Another possibility would be, that you changed something in your cosmetics, say: after shave, lotion, shampoo etc.
Last but not least: Some kinds of herbs, drugs and foods can change your sensitivity against the sun.
I wouldn't mind a lot if this was a single occurence, if this repeats itself, take a closer look and talk to your favourite medicine man :-)
Mac the Knife
1st Aug 2011, 09:44
"....strange medical condition..."
If I look out the window, I'm more likely to see a sparrow than a canary....
Use a good sunblock or you'll end up like all the old pilots, yachtsmen, farmers etc. that I treat - lots of sun-damage.
1st Aug 2011, 14:00
When I told my daughter that I might have to have a skin graft from one of my three or four buttocks to cover my cranial bald patch, she had an hysterical laughing fit.
Turns out she always wanted a legitimate excuse to call her dear old Papa 'Butt Head'! Nasty little wretch of a wench!
1st Aug 2011, 19:36
When you say tinted piece of material, how about the sun visor?