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BA A320 FO Fumes event, FO incapacitated

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BA A320 FO Fumes event, FO incapacitated

Old 5th Jan 2020, 18:22
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BA A320 FO Fumes event, FO incapacitated

British Airways Airbus A320-200, registration G-EUYM performing flight BA-633 from Athens (Greece) to London Heathrow,EN (UK), was on final approach to Heathrow's runway 27R about 4nm before touchdown when the captain donned his oxygen mask and declared Mayday, Mayday advising he was going to continue the approach. The aircraft touched down safely on runway 27R about 2 minutes later.

On Jan 4th 2020 The Aviation Herald received information that on final approach the first officer passed out, the captain smelled the odour of old socks, immediately donned his oxygen mask, declared emergency and continued for a safe landing. Passengers and cabin crew remained unaware until after landing.

On Jan 5th 2020 The Aviation Herald received more details: On approach to Heathrow the captain noticed the odour of dirty old socks, the first officer, pilot flying, did not smell anything. The captain believes the odour is dissipating. Then the first officer started breathing heavily, slumps forward and no longer responds to questions by the captain. The captain therefore takes control, dons his oxygen mask, declares Mayday, configures the aircraft for landing and lands safely. After landing, in care by medical staff, the first officer recovers.

The occurrence aircraft is still on the ground in Heathrow about 60 hours after landing.

linky:

Accident: British Airways A320 at London on Jan 2nd 2020, fumes take out first officer

ETA apparently the FO didnít pass out
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Old 5th Jan 2020, 18:26
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First Officer did not pass out.
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Old 5th Jan 2020, 23:05
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And airlines and aircraft manufacturers keep denying it.
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 00:22
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Originally Posted by M.Mouse View Post
And at the end of same article denying that anyone had actually passed out, is this sentence, "Just imagine what would have happened to flight BA-633 if the captain had also passed out." Poor editing, as of this time.
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 04:06
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Originally Posted by M.Mouse View Post
That article states that
" TCP is a toxin that, when released into the cockpit or cabin, can smell like old socks, cause nausea and even incapacitate anyone breathing it in. While fumes in the cockpit are rare, they do happen from time to time and could prove fatal if not noticed quickly. Just imagine what would have happened to flight BA-633 if the captain had also passed out. "

Fume events Nov and Dec has quite a few Airbus entries..

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Old 6th Jan 2020, 10:12
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For recognition training, may we have the inclusion of old socks smell awareness. Being a goody goody, I have no idea but, what a splendid job done by our BA Skipper.
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 10:19
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Originally Posted by lpvapproach View Post

Fume events Nov and Dec has quite a few Airbus entries..
BA seems to have a quite prominent presence there with their A320s. What‘s up with that?
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 12:27
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Serious question. Does 'old socks' mean simply and literally 'old', (not new) or 'unwashed', i.e. cheesy?
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 12:47
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Originally Posted by reverserunlocked View Post
ETA apparently the FO didnít pass out
He was just incapacitated. So that's OK then.

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Old 6th Jan 2020, 15:06
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Originally Posted by DaveReidUK View Post
He was just incapacitated. So that's OK then.
Where does it say 'incapacitated'? Let's stick with accurate descriptions of what is reported to have occurred. Not responding to questions isn't necessarily the same as medically unresponsive. Deep breaths, slumped forward, and not answering questions will be verified by the actual statements of both pilots and the FO's description of his actual symptoms and any known, or suspected, causes that he's aware of.
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 15:55
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Originally Posted by lpvapproach View Post
That article states that
" TCP is a toxin that, when released into the cockpit or cabin, can smell like old socks, cause nausea and even incapacitate anyone breathing it in. While fumes in the cockpit are rare, they do happen from time to time and could prove fatal if not noticed quickly. Just imagine what would have happened to flight BA-633 if the captain had also passed out. "

Fume events Nov and Dec has quite a few Airbus entries..
For the avoidance of doubt, the TCP referred to in the article is not the TCP antiseptic, known to many, but an organophosphate compound named tricresyl phosphate of which one of its three isomers (tri-ortho-cresyl phosphate (TOCP)) is markedly poisonous to humans (and probably to other creatures). It is used as a lubricant and hydraulic fluid, and as an additive to lubricants and hydraulic fluids.

Edited to get name of TOCP correct.

Last edited by Semreh; 6th Jan 2020 at 19:34.
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 16:41
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Originally Posted by misd-agin View Post
Where does it say 'incapacitated'?
Post #1 in this thread. Like you, I have no idea whether that's true or not.
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 18:28
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Originally Posted by DaveReidUK View Post
Post #1 in this thread. Like you, I have no idea whether that's true or not.
Subsequent report directly conflicts at least some of the information in the first post. So we're left without knowing how much is being accurately reported.


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Old 6th Jan 2020, 20:10
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Originally Posted by misd-agin View Post
Subsequent report directly conflicts at least some of the information in the first post. So we're left without knowing how much is being accurately reported.
Quite true, however I think we can all agree that there was a fume event. Sadly it seems quite common on the A320, not just with BA but several other operators of the type as well.
One odd thing, both the CFMI and IAE engined aircraft seem to suffer from the same problem.
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 20:15
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Smelly Socks

I recall several entries I made in the tech log re smelly socks (whether old or new but unwashed I know not) when on the 757. It seemed to occur for a minute or two on the descent passing about FL300. I am now too old to remember exactly what happened at 30,000ft but think it might have had something to do with the packs. The stink was fairly repulsive.
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 20:21
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Vereinigung cockpit have a very comprehensive post fume event checklist but in the UK the Balpa medical rep has been much more skeptical about these events and such events are under reported and also tend to be dismissed without any follow up as to the longer term effects of exposure.
Balpa has a lot of catching up to do.
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 20:39
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Originally Posted by misd-agin View Post
Where does it say 'incapacitated'? Let's stick with accurate descriptions of what is reported to have occurred. Not responding to questions isn't necessarily the same as medically unresponsive.
As the FO was operating in the 'capacity' of performing the expected functions of a First Officer - which incidentally includes responding to questions in a reasonably timely manner - any failure to respond in the expected manner would be a strong indication of incapacitation. SOPs and all that.

From the sound of it, if the FO was not responding to questions, so that very neatly ticks the 'incapacitated' box for me.

If you are a commercial pilot in 2 crew operation (I don't know if you are), you'll be aware of SOPs, and the required challenge and expected response during for example, the take-off roll, around 80kts, in order for both pilots to establish very quickly whether they are both operating as expected in their capacity(ies), or whether there appears to be an incapacitation of whatever description; in which case there is one and only one sensible next step. Therefore, any doubt about both pilots' capacity to operate effectively needs to be established at that time, very quickly, and comfortably before V1. Any unresponsiveness is deemed incapacitation, as seems to be reported in this case. Discussion of medical definitions of unresponsiveness is irrelevant; if you're not responding to me per SOPs, you're a passenger, not part of the crew, and I'll respond accordingly. Simple.
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 20:40
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All BA A320s have IAE V2500 engines whereas Easyjet aircraft have only CFM engines. Although Easyjet have a larger fleet of A330/A319 aircraft, BA seems to suffer more 'fumes in cockpit' incidents. This suggests that the IAE engine may be the culprit. I understand it has a higher oil pressure than other jet engines thus putting greater stress on its oil seals.
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 21:57
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Originally Posted by Avionista View Post
All BA A320s have IAE V2500 engines whereas Easyjet aircraft have only CFM engines. Although Easyjet have a larger fleet of A330/A319 aircraft, BA seems to suffer more 'fumes in cockpit' incidents. This suggests that the IAE engine may be the culprit. I understand it has a higher oil pressure than other jet engines thus putting greater stress on its oil seals.
Avherald isnít a biblical list of events. Many many events happen at airlines around the world which never show on Avherlad. Certain airlines seem to leak more information than others.
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Old 6th Jan 2020, 23:07
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There was a fairly detailed report on fume events on the BBC World Service today. It discussed several court cases that have been going on. The podcast can be found here:
https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w172w0q34d6cs2y
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