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Mysterious Illness Takes Down Plane

People were tweeting earlier about a flight that suddenly descended at an incredibly fast rate.  We all assumed something mechanical happened.  Turned out something very strange was going on.

According to NPR:

Some passengers say part way into the flight, they started having trouble breathing, and felt dizzy and nauseous.

Mary Cunningham, a nurse who happened to be on the flight, told WFSB TV that she was asked to help one sick passenger.

“By the time I saw her, she was pretty lethargic, her color looked awful, so I asked for some oxygen for her and once she had oxygen, she was looking a lot better, responsive, and then all of a sudden, the woman behind her passed out,” said Cunningham.

The crew then decided to divert the plane to Buffalo in a rapid descent from its cruising altitude of 37,000 feet. Once on the ground, emergency medical personnel treated 14 passengers and one crew member who reported symptoms, including the three who lost consciousness.

This was a WestJet flight in route to Hartford, Connecticut out of ORD.

It is not clear whether the passengers had the fish or the steak.  (Personally, I had the lasagna).

I don’t know what happened, but I do know that I assume a situation is more serious when a crew member also gets sick.

A sort of mass hysteria panic can cause people to think they are all coming down with the same thing as each other when you are in an unfamiliar space and tight quarters.

The crew is more seasoned and I assume less susceptible to that.

But I have no idea what this could be.  Any thoughts?

About Jeanne Marie Hoffman

Former bartender, still a geek. One equal part each cookies, liberty, football, music, travel, libations. Stir vigorously. +Jeanne Marie Hoffman Jeanne on Twitter

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