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Passengers

An Airline Prohibits Sick Passengers From Flying

An Airline Prohibits Sick Passengers From Flying
Jennifer Billock

Forty-seven sick passengers were ordered off a plane after they got sick with gastroenteritis while on an island vacation; the TUI flight crew was worried the plane would have to make a medical diversion so after boarding, they identified everyone who had been ill and removed them all from the flight.

After getting sick on an island vacation in Cape Verde, 47 passengers were removed from a TUI flight back to Manchester after being identified by flight crew. Passenger Michaela McLachlan and her husband were among those removed.

“We were told that they initially had concerns about a little girl who was poorly,” she told The Daily Mail. “But the crew had got wind of the fact that quite a few of the passengers had had this bug. We’d been ill earlier in the week but it hadn’t ruined our holiday. We’d just cancelled a few of the day trips and stayed on our terrace. When the cabin crew asked us about it, I turned on our light because I thought we should be honest. With hindsight, I wish I’d never turned it on because of the stress and upheaval it caused. They told us we all had to get off the flight for a check with the doctor.”

Once they got off the plane, they were not allowed to reboard in order to avoid a medical diversion.

“We’d left everything on there,” she continued. “I didn’t have my passport or anything. My husband is diabetic and started to go hypo because he didn’t have any of his snacks. Hours later with nothing to eat or drink but a box of juice and some biscuits, we were told we wouldn’t be flying at all. It was a nightmare. It wasn’t like everyone was being sick or queuing for the bathroom.”

All the passengers were eventually cleared to fly but were either put up in hotels for a couple of nights or rerouted on different flights. A spokesperson for the airline confirmed the incident but noted it was all according to the procedure.

“We can confirm as a precautionary measure any passengers reporting symptoms consistent with gastroenteritis were removed from flight TOM227 before departure from Cape Verde earlier this month,” the spokesperson told The Daily Mail. “The passengers were taken to a medical facility and given temporary accommodation until they obtained a fit to fly certificate. Alternative flights to the UK were then arranged, along with any transport where necessary. The safety and wellbeing of our customers and crew is always our highest priority. We are in contact with all affected customers to apologize for any inconvenience to their holiday.”

 

[Featured Image: Shutterstock]

View Comments (2)

2 Comments

  1. sdsearch

    November 4, 2019 at 7:24 pm

    The linked article is pretty incomplete. It doesn’t explain WHY the passenger who was interviewed left “everything” (including passport, medically-necessary stuff, etc) on board when they deplaned. Did the airline tell them to deplane without anything, or did they simply not think to take that stuff with them? If the airline told them to deplane without stuff they needed and then refused to get that stuff to them, that’s entirely different than if this person simply didn’t think before deplaning.

  2. drvannostren

    November 10, 2019 at 6:45 pm

    I kinda wish this was the case more often. I’m not sure how they’d ever implement it, but having FAs judge people’s sickness just watching them board. I’m sure I’ve gotten sick multiple times from someone ELSE on board being contagious. Also, I’m sure I’ve given sickness to others doing the same thing.

    The other thing that would need to occur though, and it won’t, is airlines would need to allow for free and reasonable changes due to sickness. I had a HELLUVA cold one day and really didn’t wanna fly from YVR-HND-Wherever, I think it might’ve been KUL. I called the airline, they said I’d only be able to get it waived with a doctor’s note, which I wasn’t gonna be able to get in time. I called my travel insurance and they said I would only qualify if I paid for that particular coverage, which apparently I don’t, or if my trip was interrupted after it started and I got a doctor’s note. They advised me to call my credit card insurer to check that insurance. That insurance was gone because I had cancelled the card that I originally had bought my ticket with and the coverage goes away with the card, not the purchase.

    Long story short, I went on the trip, felt like crap the whole way there, had a great trip anyway but I really shouldn’t have flown but I wasn’t about to pay like $300 + fare difference just because I had a cold.

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