” Aerotoxic Syndrome “: health threat to airline pilots and passengers?
Airline flights are a fairly safe reality. However, recently some French pilots have raised concerns about “Aerotoxic Syndrome” a deadly condition caused by contamination of air recirculation originating from the aircraft’s engine. Specifically, the cause of Aerotoxic Syndrome, is attributed to inhaling air contaminated with toxic vapors from engine oils, inside an airplane.
The air recirculation system of an aircraft, pumps air from the outside: initially by means of mechanical pumps, in more modern times through the compressed air of turbomotors.
However, studies have found that the only harmful effects may be found in the cockpit, a concern for pilots but not for passengers, as Britain’s civil aviation authorities report that there is “nothing for passengers or crew to be concerned about.” Only in February 2015 in Britain a “coroner” identified the cause of death that occurred in 2012 of a pilot, 43-year-old Richard Westgate, of British Airways: it was allegedly contaminated cockpit air during flight/work shifts. The response triggered initial insights into the etiologic link between on-board habitat and health risk. After years of persistent headaches, nausea and chronic fatigue that would, in the long run, over the years of flying, trigger and result through “toxic fumes” sucked in the sickness that would eventually cause the pilot”s death.
After the scientific opinion, in Britain at least fifty pilot commanders from different countries, some of them retired, with tens of thousands of flight hours are intent on suing, denouncing the criticality of the air’environment on board and the risk related to the time spent on board of a disease kept hidden, at least since the 1950s. Until a few years ago precisely because of the absence of information, even most doctors were unable to diagnose it and treat the sick in a timely manner. Some experts are convinced that filters would solve the problem, preventing the release of a neurotoxin found in motor oil, Tricresyl phosphate (TCP).
This substance, TCP, is used as a food additive as it falls under antioxidants and acidity regulators under the category of calcium phosphates with the abbreviation E341.
In light of this complaint by the French drivers, comments Giovanni D’Agata of the “Sportello dei Diritti,” investigations and verifications and expert opinions will find substantial contradictions in the course of the hearings that will be held not only in Britain and France but also in many countries. Moving more and more rapidly from one place to another on Planet Earth is an increasingly practiced and indispensable reality in contemporary civilization and community, although it is necessary and will be necessary to estimate and verify the risk to health.