Ireland Flight forced to divert to Shannon Airport after passenger suffers head injury following fall on-board
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A transatlantic flight was forced to divert to earlier today after a passenger suffered a suspected head injury in a fall on board.
flight AA-52 was travelling from Philadelphia in US to Prague in the Czech Republic when the crew declared a a medical emergency shortly after 5am.
There were 206 passengers and a crew of 12 on board.
The flight was less than an hour west of Ireland when the crew issued a Pan-Pan radio call indicating that they had a "medical situation" on board and confirming they wished to divert and land at Shannon Airport.
Crew members reported that a woman in her 50s had suffered a fall and was experiencing seizures. It’s understood that a number of medical professionals including doctors were travelling on the flight and assessed the woman.
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According to sources, the woman suffered a second fall after visiting the toilet and doctors became more concerned about her after that incident. It was feared she had suffered a head injury in the initial fall which possibly resulted in the second fall.
After consulting with cabin crew staff, the doctors agreed that it would be best to divert to the nearest suitable airport and have the woman assessed further in hospital.
Authorities at Shannon were informed of the incoming emergency aircraft and the National Ambulance Service was contacted and requested to mobilise resources to the airport.
The Airbus A330-200 jet landed at 5.50am and taxied to terminal where ground staff and ambulance paramedics were waiting to meet the aircraft. The woman was removed to University Hospital Limerick for treatment however her condition was not known.
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The flight resumed its journey at around 9.35am.
An airline spokesperson said: “American Airlines flight AA52 from Philadelphia to Prague diverted to Shannon due to a medical issue onboard. The flight landed safely and without incident where it was met by medical personnel. The flight re-departed and arrived in Prague at 12:33pm local time.”
It was the second medical diversion at Shannon Airport in just 18 hours.
A holiday jet made an unscheduled landing at the mid-west airport on Thursday afternoon so a passenger could receive medical attention.
Thomson flight BY-1448 was less than an hour into its journey from Glasgow, Scotland to Lanzarote in the Canary Islands when the crew turned around off the Cork coast and diverted to Shannon.
The flight landed at 4.33pm and resumed its journey shortly after 6.00pm. A woman was removed to hospital by ambulance for treatment.
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So far this year, the airport has dealt with around 50 unscheduled landings 16 of which were medical diversions, the same number for the entire of 2018.
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