Mysterious Odor Makes Flight Attendants Sick, Forces Flight Back to Hawaii

Alaska Airlines flight AS892 from Honolulu to San Diego took a 2 hour journey to nowhere yesterday as flight attendants got sick from a mysterious odor and the aircraft had to turn around.

About an hour into the flight, flight attendants reported smelling an unusual odor in the back of the cabin. That’s when pilots decided to turn around, declared an emergency to get priority landing and landed without incident in Honolulu at 6:39 p.m.

Four crew members sought hospital treatment on arrival in Honolulu for “nausea, headache type systems possibly from fumes.” Alaska Airlines says no passengers were affected. Passengers were given hotels in Honolulu and rebooked onto today’s flight. This was made easier because Wednesday’s diverted then cancelled flight was less than half full.

While recognizing that passengers and crew had places to be and people to see, if you’re going to get stuck somewhere, with a free hotel night on the airline, I suppose Hawaii is as good a place.

Smelly poo once forced a British Airways flight to turn around. I always find that when the smell is bad enough, used coffee grounds from the galley will do the trick.

A year ago crew on American 777s got sick in quick succession, experiencing lightheadedness. No cause was reported.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Frank isnt the only one bothered by aerotoxic syndrome. One day I belueve it will rival asbestos in the league of scandals.

  2. Those “I don’t want to go back to the mainland” fumes are really strong around here…

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