Well, this sounds like a pretty crappy situation for everyone involved.
The transatlantic Delta Air Lines flight was forced to turn around Friday after a passenger had a severe case of diarrhea, according to multiple reports.
Flight DL194, traveling from Atlanta to Barcelona, had to make a U-turn near central Virginia, data from Flightradar24 indicates.
An audio transmission between the pilots and air traffic control recorded from LiveATC.com was shared by an aviation enthusiast on X, formerly Twitter.
“It’s just a biohazard issue,” a pilot could be heard saying in the recording. “We had a passenger who had diarrhea all the way through the airplane so they want us to come back to Atlanta.”
The Airbus A350 made it back to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport a little more than two hours after its departure, according to FlightAware.
An Airbus A330 flying from Toulouse, France, in July.
Delta told CNN that the flight was delayed for over eight hours. It eventually landed in Barcelona without further incident on Saturday at 5:16 p.m. local time.
“Our teams worked as quickly and safely as possible to get our customers to their final destination,” a spokesperson told the outlet. “We sincerely apologize to our customers for the delay and inconvenience to their travel plans.”
A Delta rep told Insider that flight DL194 had to return to Atlanta following “an onboard medical issue,” though the airline never indicated what this issue was. HuffPost has reached out to the airline for clarification about the medical issue and hasn’t received a response. However, we hope whoever had the accident is surrounded by loved ones and lots of Pepto Bismol.
Some users on X claimed to be on the flight or knew someone who was and provided more details.
“My partner was on that flight! It was pretty bad,” one user wrote. “It was dribbled down the aisle, smelled horrible. The vanilla scented disinfectant used on it only made it smell like vanilla s***. After the plane landed, it was thoroughly cleaned. They didn’t leave until around 2:30 am.”
“Both my wife and I were on the flight. It was a mess,” another user wrote. “The pilots made the right decision to turn around. The ground crew ripped out the carpet and put new in. Considering the circumstances, the ground crew did a great job, along the attendants and the pilots.”
Turning around, although inconvenient, sounds like a much better call than other airlines have made in similar situations.
In June, a passenger on an Air France flight from Paris to Toronto found a puddle of a previous passenger’s blood and diarrhea on the floor of the seat in front of him, CNN reported. When the passenger alerted a flight attendant about the mess near his feet, he told the outlet he was handed wet wipes and had to clean it himself.
He told CNN, “We had to sit there smelling the blood for the next seven hours.”