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2 pilots, in 2 days, become incapacitated mid-flight. Was the onboard WiFi a factor?

By kcrofton at Oct. 7, 2015, 5:10 p.m., 13835 hits

Yesterday, on October 5, 2015 an American Airlines captain lost consciousness from an apparent heart attack mid-flight from Phoenix to Boston, and died. He had a previous history; his widow reports he had by-pass surgery in 2006.

The next day - today - another medical emergency: a United Airlines co-pilot passed out, lost consciousness, mid-flight from Houston to San Francisco.

Was the WiFi in the cockpit a factor?

If someone has a previous medical history are they more vulnerable to the adverse effects of WiFi exposure?

We know adverse effects can be exacerbated in a confined metal space - like an aircraft, or vehicle. (Consider that before filling your car with WiFi, cell phone and Bluetooth radiation.)

Is anyone considering this aspect in aviation incident investigations?

Before this technology was implemented did anyone test for cardiac or neurological symptoms?

There is evidence of these adverse effects.

Excerpts from the Statement of Concern
- a previous copy is on our website: - under Doctors for Safer Skies.

Stephen Sinatra, MD (Board-Certified Cardiologist) regarding in-flight WiFi:

“I would like tests on pilots for potential cardiac and cognitive effects. Increased risk of cardiac symptoms including: arrhythmia, tachycardia, myocardial infarction (heart attack), TIA, and stroke.

As far as we know, no one has tested the accumulated exposures within the aircraft when a good number of passengers, and flight crew, are using their mobile devices. It is unwise to install wireless technology (WiFi) in public transportation, especially aircraft.

We know that the heart is sensitive to, and can be adversely affected by, the same frequency used for WiFi (2.4 GHz) at levels a fraction of federal guidelines (less than 1%).”

In 2015 there were more reports of passengers feeling faint and losing consciousness on Alaska Airlines flights, including one from DC to Seattle; a flight attendant reported,

”There were 5 people down, requiring oxygen. One fainted in the aisle. All were heart and BP related. I am very concerned that this could be from the inflight WiFi, as I feel it as well. There were no indications of toxic fumes or other apparent causes."

Then a SkyWest/United flight where a nurse began feeling unwell when she went to assist passengers in medical distress.

Were they sitting near an access point? Was this factor part of the investigation check list? We request that this aviation inflight entertainment product be re-evaluated including a risk assessment of what could happen in a worst-case scenario – cognitive impairment and/or cardiac dysfunction of the pilot, or loss of consciousness in cruise flight, for example.

In accident investigations, we suggest, RF (WiFi) exposure should be routinely evaluated as a potential contributing factor, especially when there is not another clear cause.

In light of these recurring, ‘unexplained’ incidents, does it seem prudent to consider this factor?

On your next flight you may delight in the convenience of the inflight WiFi; yet if you study this evidence you may share our concern and alert your medical colleagues and professional associations.

We need more doctors to raise a medical alert and aviation authorities to adopt the precautionary principle as many public health officials are now doing regarding cell phone radiation exposure, especially with children and pregnant women.

Pilots, and their passengers, may also be at risk.

Kerry Crofton, PhD
Canadian Civil Aviation Tribunal Ret'd

— Last Edited by Kerry Crofton, PhD at 2015-10-06 19:57:01 —

Posts [ 2 ] | Last post Oct. 7, 2015, 5:10 p.m.
#1 - Oct. 7, 2015, 4:50 p.m.
Hans J. Kugler, PhD

Could also be that the airplanes flew through just recently Chemtrail-sprayed sky. Recall that “in order to lay a shield against some sun energy from reaching earth” these SRM (solar radiation management) sprays are done at altitudes of 30,000 to 40,000 ft (altitudes were airliners fly) and that inside air is nothing but compressed outside air. For more click on
PEOPLE WANT TO KNOW! Global Warming – the science, EXTREME urgency to take countermeasures, and associated blunders – are very basic and easily explained.

and - more problem-specific:
Unusual, symptoms in airline passengers – inflammation, allergies, flu-like - connected to the toxins in Chemtrail/SRM spray

#2 - Oct. 7, 2015, 5:10 p.m.
Kerry Crofton, PhD

We are not trying to establish causal probability between onboard WiFi connectivity and these incidents, they could be a result of many other factors and the pilot who died had by-pass surgery several years ago.

However, there have been several reports over the past few years of pilots losing consciousness on WiFi-enabled aircraft - see below - fortunately, not two on the same plane.

This summer, an Alaska Airlines flight attendant reported a passenger seated in Row 4 lost consciousness mid-flight and a physician onboard was not able to revive him. She did some research and found out that one of the WiFi access points would have been right above this passenger's head.

As concerned customers, we have concerns that no one seems to be testing, or monitoring, for potential adverse cardiac or neurological effects on flight crews in WiFi-enabled aircraft.

It seems aviation authorities are recognizing electronic interference: an American Airlines Captain sent me this yesterday:

“The FAA came out last October with an (AD) Airworthiness Directive for Various Boeing aircraft due to WiFi interference? The airlines have been given 5 years to replace the Display Units.”

Would it not seem prudent to also test for potential adverse effects on the flight crew, and on us, the passengers?