Airlines deny toxic air accusations from Bexhill woman

Dee Passon, who suffers from aerotoxic syndrome. SUS-150827-111459001
Dee Passon, who suffers from aerotoxic syndrome. SUS-150827-111459001

A former cabin crew member from Bexhill has been causing a stir in the national media as she campaigns for safer air on aeroplanes.

Dee Passon, of Glyne Ascent, believes a chemical used as an anti-wear agent in jet engines is causing illness and even death to passengers and staff.

The 56-year-old has appeared in national newspapers, the Victoria Derbyshire show on BBC Two and in an upcoming documentary series on a major terrestrial channel.

Mrs Passon used to work for British Airways (BA), which has staunchly denied the accusations that its planes are causing aerotoxic syndrome, the condition she suffers from.

“I’ve got to let passengers know as they will suffer too,” she said.

“It’s amazing they have kept a lid on this for as long as they have.”

The chemical used by airlines, tricresyl phospate, is linked to napalm and can cause pneumonia, brain haemorrhages and heart problems.

Mrs Passon believes hundreds of unexplained deaths could be linked to the toxic fumes on planes.

She said symptoms can take a few hours or a few weeks after flying to surface and can be fatal, placing cabin crew members in ‘serious danger’.

“There was a death in every 804 BA staff in 2014 – that’s more deaths per year than the Met Police,” she said.

“All they need to do is filter the air and it would be fine, but they don’t.”

A BA spokesman said: “We would not operate an aircraft if we believed it posed a health or safety risk to our customers or crew.

“There has been substantial research into questions around cabin air quality over many years.

“In summary, the research has not shown that exposure to potential chemicals in the cabin causes long-term ill health.

“We will continue to keep abreast of the objective scientific information available.”

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