A holiday jet was forced to make a u-turn and emergency dash to Shannon Airport yesterday after a passenger fell ill on board.
Thomson Airways flight TOM-1740 was en route from Dublin to Lanzarote when the crew contacted air traffic controllers at Shannon to request permission to turn around and divert.
The flight was about 200 kilometres south of Cork at around 3.25pm when the crew declared a medical emergency.
The flight had left Dublin at 2.42pm and was about 45 minutes into its journey when the crew issued a Pan Pan distress call confirming they had a patient on board who had collapsed and was unresponsive.
The crew of the Boeing 737-800 opted to divert and land at Shannon despite Cork airport being considerably closer. It’s understood the decision was taken to allow the crew burn off aviation fuel to ensure a safe weight for landing.
The pilot requested that emergency medical services be on standby for their arrived shortly after 4.00pm.
Emergency crews at Shannon Airport were also placed on standby for the aircraft’s arrival while an ambulance and rapid response advanced paramedic unit from Ennis were mobilised to the airport.
The flight landed safely at 4.05pm and taxied to the terminal here paramedics and a doctor were waiting to board the plane.
The passenger was removed to University Hospital Limerick for treatment while the flight was prepared to continued its journey.