Aerotoxic radio programme.

Minisorella

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I assume the replier 'Allan' works for the airline in a managerial position? He appears to be in denial about the effects of fume toxicity and just doesn't want to see the link.
I know nothing about such things compared to you Bill but I know enough that industries deny, deny, deny until they are blue in the face until eventually they back themselves into a corner with nowhere else to go. Then, finally, the truth comes out, then the hard bargaining about compensation starts., which is what it is really all about for the airline industry. Money! Not peoples lives. What a sick way of looking at your fellow man/woman.
For the sufferers it is about recognition of the link, and yes, any compensation would be welcome as those affected become less mobile or more ill, specialist equipment, home adaptations or even the need to move to a single level dwelling and of course income will be necessary.
All the best to you Bill, keep on punching.

Spot on Ral. This is exactly the same sort of cover up as perpetrated by DuPont about the toxicity of Teflon...

I'll never understand why companies continue to blatantly deny when the evidence is overwhelming :unsure: It just makes them look a million times more evil and massively increases the size of subsequent compensation payouts. The airline industry has a hell of a lot to answer for... as do all the others who conceal the uncomfortable truth for financial reasons.
 

2cv

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Some interesting links within this latest update Link
Personally I’d prefer something being done to prevent further health damage to a compensation payout. Nothing can compensate for constant pain and loss of mobility, or in some cases even death, but if the threat of payouts is what is needed to get something done then so be it. It’s very interesting in one of the links to see the amazing amounts in compensation payouts for other poisonous chemicals litigations.
 

HurricaneSmith

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Trudie doesn't take prisoners. Good for her.
 
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2cv

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This little article is nearly a year old now, but I thought it worth posting as it summarises the problem very simply. It’s good that lawyers in America are taking an interest as ultimately the solution will only be applied when the industry sees it as the best thing economically. Link to article.
 

2cv

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Good to see that Tristan continues to campaign;

“Some within the EU are trying to tell us that exposure to TCP in aircraft is OK. This is my letter to them...

Mr. Bjorn Hansen,
Executive Director
European Chemicals Agency (ECHA)
Annankatu 18
00120 Helsinki,
Finland
Sent via email: executive-director@echa.europa.eu
Sunday 12th December 2021

REF: RIVM report titled “SUBSTANCE EVALUATION CONCLUSION as required by REACH Article 48 and EVALUATION REPORT for tris (methylphenyl) phosphate; EC No. 809-930-9 and CAS No. 1330-78-5”

Dear Sir,
I am a former British Airways airline captain and Health & Safety representative. I have been investigating the issue of contaminated air exposures on aircraft since May 2001. I was awarded a British Citizen Award for Services to Industry (BCAi) by the British people for my work in this field in 2015. Consequently, having reviewed your ‘SUBSTANCE EVALUATION CONCLUSION’ report for tricresyl phosphate (TCP), I feel qualified to provide feedback on this matter.
I was ill health retired by my airline after the British aviation regulator, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) suspended by medical certificate to act as an airline pilot. The CAA did this after they reviewed a dozen medical and expert reports. The reports confirmed a decline in my health following repeat exposures to pyrolised synthetic jet engine oils containing TCP. TCP was also found in one of my blood tests after an exposure. A colleague of mine also had the TCP isomer, TOCP, found in his blood by a forensics laboratory.
Nearly all swab samples carried out in aircraft confirm the presence of TCP. This is not a surprise as the bleed air supply from the engines is unfiltered and oils will leak into the breathing air supply (bleed air) as a function of current engine seal design. Therefore, it's a logical conclusion to confirm that crews and passengers are being exposed to TCP from synthetic jet engine oils on a daily basis.
The aviation industry try to mislead the uninformed by saying the oils cannot leak into the air supply or that the air on aircraft is better than in your home. This is misinformation similar to the tobacco industry telling us nicotine is not addictive. The reality is that a dozen national air accident departments around the world, whose job it is to investigate accidents and incidents, have made over 50 recommendations and findings in relation to contaminated air exposures. They have twice recommended that all aircraft should have contaminated air warning systems fitted to warn when the air is contaminated, the last was some 15 years ago. Sadly the industry has ignored these recommendations.
Your report shows a lack of understanding of the health and flight safety issues that are ongoing on a daily basis. You appear to rely on a 2018/2019 inhalation study undertaken by the registrants. However, their studies did not utilise the specific TCP formulation used in engine oils. These being SYN-O-AD-8484 and Durad 125, which are made at 2 specific plants in the world. I understand the validity of these flawed pieces of research, has been already raised with you by other subject matter experts.
I also note that whilst the registrants were asked to assess health effects of workers exposed to TCP, they did not assess aircrew health effects or exposures to TCP after oil fume exposures. As the spokesperson of the leading crew coalition dealing with these issues, the Global Cabin Air Quality Executive (GCAQE), I can confirm that neither the GCAQE, nor any of its member organisations were approached by any lubricant or TCP manufacturer in this regard.
Why did the registrants fail to review the countless published papers, testimonies, air safety reports, air accident report findings, media coverage or actually ask unions for feedback? One can only conclude that the study design has not asked the right questions or has not been undertaken in a constructive manner to enable the appropriate questions to be asked and answered.
If you don’t ask the right questions any study will be flawed. It appears that ECHA seem to have been misled by the registrants or have chosen to ignore an entire working population in a safety critical industry.
I would also like to highlight the clear conflict of interest that exists by RIVM undertaking this work for ECHA, whilst also receiving funding to undertake the European Commission’s FACTS study.
Has ECHA asked all engine oil lubricant manufacturers to disclose all previous internal or funded research carried out in relation to their products potential impact on health? If not, why not?
Your website states that the ECHA remit is to: ”We, together with our partners, work for the safe use of chemicals.” In the context of passenger and crew exposure to heated jet engine oils or hydraulic fluids, this is clearly not the case. You are ignoring the European Precaution principle and ignoring what is written on the cans of oils these products come in: ‘Do not breathe mist or vapour from heated product, suspected of causing cancer etc..’
Yours faithfully,

Captain Tristan Loraine BCAi
GCAQE Spokesperson
E: tristan@tristanloraine.com
 

2cv

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Some slightly encouraging news this week, not for those already damaged but perhaps a chance to prevent future effects.

“MAJOR BREAKING NEWS
A new patent has been filed by the French lubricant company NYCO who have developed a new engine oil with a reported better toxicological profile to current oils on the market. The oil still needs to go through a lengthy evaluation phase which may take a year but this is a historic moment in the contaminated air journey.”

It has however been pointed out that some damaging chemicals remain, with filtration or design changes eliminating all harmful fumes.
 

2cv

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This report is quite technical, but also quite important as it suggests that many aircraft accidents may have been due to the effects of oil fumes on pilots. As in many things to do with things aerotoxic, up till now investigations have mainly involved those with vested interests such as manufacturers. Link
 

HurricaneSmith

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I completely accept that the industry has been dragging it's heels, probably scared witless by future compensation claims, but I was guilty of skin reading this technical report.

Would it have been more powerful if there had been an Executive Summary?

For me it's the appraisal that I look for first.
 

2cv

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I completely accept that the industry has been dragging it's heels, probably scared witless by future compensation claims, but I was guilty of skin reading this technical report.

Would it have been more powerful if there had been an Executive Summary?

For me it's the appraisal that I look for first.
The section “Abstract” at the very beginning is a summary.

Meanwhile fume events continue to take place and many thousands are poisoned slowly every day by the inevitable small exposures;


“Accident: Allegiant A319 enroute on Dec 13th 2021, fumes injure flight attendant.


“An Allegiant Airbus A319-100, registration N318NV performing flight G4-33 from Las Vegas,NV to Bozeman,MT (USA), was enroute about 20 minutes into the flight, when a flight attendant noticed a strong, thick foul locker room smell near seat rows 7-12 and began to feel burning sensations in chest, eyes and nose. Other flight attendants confirmed smelling some odour, however, did not report to be affected. Headache, dizziness and shortness of breath followed. The flight attendant walked to the back of the cabin worrying she might faint, at the back of the cabin her fingers and arms cramped, she lost feel of her legs, and needed to be laid onto the floor, a collegue administered oxygen. Medical personnel on board was called out, three passengers came to provide first aid, however, because of the cramps had trouble to remove the clothing and connect a defibrillator with the medics suspecting she was tachycardiac. While the flight crew accelerated approach and landing to Bozeman, the passengers prepared for a landing with the flight attendant on the floor, with 3 of them holding her on the floor throughout the landing. The aircraft landed without further incident about 75 minutes after departure from Las Vegas, emergency services came on board, cut open the flight attendant's clothes, connected an automatic external defibrillator (AED), diagnosed acute supraventricular tachycardia, used a wheelchair to get the flight attendant off the aircraft, then put her onto a stretcher and took her to the hospital.“
 

HurricaneSmith

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I remember the incident and that civilian medical staff were fortunate enough to be on board. It made scary reading, and I'm shocked that the subject is not discussed in the media far more often.

Even now, national governance organisations don't appear to be visibly running with the subject, and find ways of gaining public understanding and support to ensure it happens. Preferably sooner rather than later.
 
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2cv

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Those who have followed this thread now know quite a lot about the problem. Yesterday was the 13th anniversary of the death of Captain Tim Lindsay and some interesting writing about and by him follow. I was on the same fleet and blood tests showed raised levels of the same chemicals. In my case at least I have survived for now, if wounded. I know several others from the fleet who have died young.

From Tristan Lorraine;

Captain Tim Lindsay

13 years ago today, we lost one of great campaigners of the contaminated air issue, Captain Tim Lindsay. Sadly I only knew him for a few years.

Tim sent me this email in March 2004, the day after I first met him:


Tristan

At last someone else who wants to look at what matters. I am worried about my cognitive functions while flying and neurological damage. Something definitely happens when I breathe the stuff in!

Nice meeting you yesterday.

Keep in touch

Tim

Tim risked his job by acquiring with the help of an engineer a used HEPA filter from an aircraft in maintenance. The filter although only designed to capture bacteria and viruses, was sent for examination in North America and it was found to also contain a number of hazardous chemicals proving we were breathing this stuff in.



Tim also carried out many swab samples that were also positive for tricresyl phosphate.



I was with him the night before he passed away and he will always be in my heart as someone who cared and paid the ultimate price for breathing contaminated air. He died from a brain tumor.

He wrote this letter to his union BALPA in May 2006...

Dear All

I am amazed by the intransigence of the BACC (BRITISH AIRWAYS COMPANY COUNCIL) over the ongoing problem of B757 fumes. Why so little interest guys because this is a SERIOUS health issue?

I believe I have a right to a working environment free from toxic contamination and there is more and more evidence to show that BA B757 pilots are regularly exposed to vapourised and pyrolysed (from the high temperature breakdown of the constituents) synthetic engine oil and/or hydraulic fluid which are harmful.

I notice an oil-like smell on over half the take-offs in 757s. Transient maybe but present never-the-less and it shouldn't be.

It is absorbed. How do I know? Because I paid (several hundred pounds!!) for a private blood test which showed elevated levels of VOCs 24 hours after an event! I attach the VOC result. You will note that levels of benzene, toluene, dichlorobenzene, n-heptane are all several times higher than in the average population (I'm sure you know that these are harmful compounds to the body!). Taking into account the excretion/detoxification between exposure and testing, the levels during the event were likely to be around 8 to 32 times this. I passed the results to BAHS (BRITISH AIRWAYS HEALTH SERVICES) (who told me for years and even on the morning of my testing that any substances from oil inhalation would be gone in less than half an hour after exposure and that no blood tests could show anything!) and they now are seeking specialist interpretation. The proof is there at last! Other tests were done, equally damning and should you want to see them, I will gladly talk you through them including the presence of organophoshate distorting mitochondrial membranes!

Yes there is more, I have taken part in a neuro-psychological study of 27 pilots exposed to aircraft fumes and I attach the summary of the findings. The study is credible being done by one of the country's leading neuropsychological scientists at University College London. It appears I have suffered brain injury along with all other pilots tested, consistent with an inhalation injury from oil. This is being digested by the Committee on Toxicity reporting to the AHWG.

There is a culture on the B757 fleet where pilots do not report oil smells for several reasons. These are, in my view:

• A belief that the oil fumes are harmless and insignificant

• Commercial pressure especially as the effect of a first report is to delay a service and the second report to effectively cancel a service.

• A reluctance to report them to avoid being labelled a troublemaker by the management. Just last week, the management rang my co-pilot from a there-and-back to ask if he had smelt anything despite me writing in the tech log that both of us smelt it. No attempt was made to contact me. I guess my reporting in a legal document was not sufficient for them. This has also occurred to other captains writing up fumes.

• Misinformation has been put out for example that Tristan and I have accounted for 99% of all worldwide fume diversions and that we are "terrorists".

Last year BALPA, as a whole, ran a Contaminated Air Protection Conference and the conclusion was that there is a problem. Science and the campaign have now moved on to the point that exposure and effect are quantifiable, much to the credit of Tristan who I'm sure you are aware is LTS (LONG TERM SICK) from chemical exposure at work. Please play your part in supporting this campaign and regularly ask crews in the newsletters to be rigorous in reporting any oil smells on all fleets but particularly the 757s as they may be USUAL BUT NOT NORMAL.

I believe that you that you could also mention the results of the blood test that has show proof of exposure to VOCs after a fume event and the contact details of the laboratory (which I can supply) should members wish to have theirs tested after smelling oil on the flight deck or after a long week's 757 flying.

All this talk of ensuring a good pension is great but remember we have to be around long enough to draw it!

I imagine that in the light of recent advances much will happen in the near future but I'm sure you are aware of the obstacles that we still face from industry, regulators and manufacturers to achieve a fair outcome. The swift resolution of this issue is crucial though for the longterm sustainability of our company as an accident from a fume incident or large liability claims from passengers and crew could seriously affect the profitability of our business.

Tim Lindsay

Capt

B757/B767


4767A996-119C-47AB-BDBD-A3188C7BFD6E.jpeg
 

2cv

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Such a shame that it did not get to trial, as early as post #9 in this thread I pointed out the reality.

Boeing settles ‘toxic air’ case hours before trial
by: Ben Bradley
Posted: Apr 18, 2022 / 07:10 AM CDT
Updated: Apr 18, 2022 / 12:20 PM CDT

CHICAGO — There have been complaints for decades about the system most Boeing commercial jetliners use to pump oxygen into the cabin; but hours before the Chicago-based company was scheduled to stand trial to answer claims toxic air contributed to a person’s death, Boeing settled.
That means the public will not get to see internal documents and other evidence the plaintiff’s attorneys argued demonstrate Boeing has known about the potential for dangerous air to mix into the cabin of its airplanes.
“He came home and told me he had a ‘fumes event’ and the aircraft had filled with smoke,” Martha Weiland said of an experience her pilot husband Ron had in 2016. He was the pilot of an American Airlines 767 at the time. The cockpit crew fired-up the jet’s engines only to have the airplane overcome with smoke and fumes. Initial burning in his eyes, nose and throat eventually changed to more serious symptoms in the months that followed, according to allegations made in Weiland’s lawsuit against Boeing. “It started-out with slurring of his words occasionally then it progressed to him not being able to speak at all, him not being able to swallow and finally into the loss of the use of his legs,” Martha Weiland recalled. Her husband died in 2019.
All Boeing commercial jets – except the 787 Dreamliner – use what’s known as a “bleed air system” in which outside air is sucked through the engine and essentially bled-off and diverted into the cabin and recirculated with the air passengers and crew are already breathing. Under normal circumstances there aren’t issues. However, if there’s an engine problem such as an oil leak, potentially toxic fumes can fill the cabin.
“Boeing has known since 1953 toxic air can get into the cabin,” Weiland’s attorney Zoe Littlepage told WGN Investigates on the eve of the trial. “Monday is the first time some of those internal documents will see the light of the day, this is the very first trial of contaminated air where some of the documents that have been hidden in Boeing’s file cabinets can come out and people can see them.”
In 2016, WGN Investigates reported on other concerns, complaints and lawsuits filed over the air issue. The report quoted a 2007 message from a person who worked in Boeing’s environmental controls department that discussed pilots’ complaints about smoke and smells that may be the by-product of hot turbine oil. The Boeing staffer wrote with apparent frustration “Bottomline is I think we are looking for a tombstone before anyone with any horsepower is going to take interest.”
Then – and now – Boeing says there’s nothing to fear. The company released a statement that says in part: “The cabin air inside Boeing airplanes is safe. Independent researchers, universities, industry groups, and government agencies have conducted extensive research on cabin air quality. The results repeatedly demonstrate that contaminant levels on aircraft are generally low and that health and safety standards are met. Based on that research, the world’s five leading aerospace medical associations have rejected a connection between cabin air and significant health effects, and no aviation regulator has determined that additional safety regulations are required.”
Martha Weiland was seeking millions of dollars in damages from Boeing as well as changes to the cabin air system. However, terms of the settlement have not been disclosed. Weiland’s attorneys and Boeing declined to comment on why they chose to avert a trial.
 

2cv

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Progress in recognition is continuing, with this article from a widely respected source summarising things very clearly. Link
 

2cv

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Gulf War Syndrome has some very similar symptoms to Aerotoxic Syndrome, and has very recently been attributed to Sarin poisoning. Link Interestingly the engine oils used in jet aircraft contain the same chemicals as the chemical weapons.
 

wildebus

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"Weiland’s attorneys and Boeing declined to comment on why they chose to avert a trial"
Think that is pretty obvious? Weiland got the money and Boeing avoided the risk of having a court precedent set.
 
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