Hsaive In October, 2013 Ms. Petra Haluskova captured video of airline crew spraying passengers as they were seated inside the aircraft. One crew member scolded Petra to stop the video camera. When Petra complained about the spraying the crew arranged for Petra to be escorted off the aircraft by several armed security personnel.
This is on a China Eastern Airlines flight from Shanghai to Sydney. The hostesses sprayed this all through the cabins about 30 minutes before landing. I was told to stop filming. We had no information, no announcement, no MSDS or anything telling us what and why.
1. Insecticide active ingredient: D-Phenothrin OR Permethrin
- It happens during or just prior to descent on ALL inbound flights for Australia and New Zealand even if you don’t see it. More residual sprays are used before passengers board, leaving a film on all surfaces.
It is not the decision of the Airline. It is decided by the government of the destination country. Read: “Schedule of aircraft disinsection procedures for flights into Australia and New Zealand”
No need to bash China Eastern Airlines. They just do it in a visible way. Other airlines spray through the ventilation systems. Don’t believe it? Read the WHO/IPCS document.
- W.H.O. and the I.P.C.S. have documented the reasons, procedures, risks and health impact. Read: INTERNATIONAL PROGRAMME ON CHEMICAL SAFETY – Environmental Health Criteria 243 – AIRCRAFT DISINSECTION INSECTICIDES
All passengers agree to this when they accept the terms and conditions of the ticket with no ability to “opt-out”.
The hostesses/flight attendants are at the greatest toxic risk. Spare a thought for them.
INTERNATIONAL PROGRAMME ON CHEMICAL SAFETY
Environmental Health Criteria 243
AIRCRAFT DISINSECTION INSECTICIDES
(Page 5) “Reports completed by flight attendants or airline personnel have suggested the possibility of the onset of symptoms in passengers and crew members as a consequence of pyrethroid application.The reported symptoms varied from metallic taste, slight and nonspecific irritation of eyes, throat and upper respiratory tract and, in some cases, skin, to severe respiratory symptoms such as dyspnoea, cough and even asthma. In other cases headache and allergic reactions were reported.” (More)
d-Phenothrin is an insecticide belonging to the pyrethroid family. Pyrethroids are the man-made versions of pyrethrins, natural insecticides from chrysanthemum flowers. d-Phenothrin is used in homes, commercial settings, gardens, pet products, and mosquito control programs. d-Phenothrin was first registered in the United States in 1976. It is a colorless to yellow-brown liquid with a faint odor.
Children may be more sensitive to pesticides compared to adults. It is currently unknown whether children have increased sensitivity specifically to d-phenothrin. When pregnant rats and rabbits were fed d-phenothrin, their offspring showed signs of sensitivity.
d-Phenothrin is practically non-toxic to birds, but very highly toxic to fish and other aquatic animals. d-Phenothrin is highly toxic to honey bees.(More)
PHENOTHRIN: Safety Summary for Veterinary Use
Mechanism of action of Phenothrin
Synthetic pyrethroids, including phenothrin, have a similar mode of action as organochlorines. They act on the membrane of nerve cells blocking the closure of the ion gates of the sodium channel during re-polarization. This strongly disrupts the transmission of nervous impulses, causing spontaneous depolarization of the membranes or repetitive discharges. At low concentrations insects and other arthropods suffer from hyperactivity. At high concentrations they are paralyzed and die. Sensory and nervous cells are particularly sensitive. (More)