TAAG B773 at Porto and Lisbon on Oct 1st 2016, departed with ground worker trapped in cargo hold

Last Update: October 18, 2016 / 20:43:15 GMT/Zulu time

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Incident Facts

Date of incident
Oct 1, 2016

Classification
Accident

Flight number
DT-655

Destination
Luanda, Angola

Aircraft Registration
D2-TEI

Aircraft Type
Boeing 777-300

ICAO Type Designator
B773

A TAAG Angola Airlines Boeing 777-300, registration D2-TEI performing flight DT-655 from Porto (Portugal) to Luanda (Angola), was enroute at FL350 about 60nm southeast of Lisbon (Portugal) when the crew was informed that a ground worker has gone missing in Porto, the ground worker had last taken care of cargo loading and was presumed locked into the cargo hold of DT-655. The crew turned around and diverted to Lisbon making a rapid descent and landing on Lisbon's runway 03 18 minutes later. The ground worker was found in the cargo hold suffering from Hypothermia and was taken to a hospital.

The airline reported the ground worker is recovering in hospital care and is well. An investigation into the occurrence has been opened.

The ground handling agency reported the worker was loading the box of a passenger's pet when he fell and became unconscious. The aircraft departed with the unconscious worker. 40 minutes after the aircraft had departed the absence of the worker was noticed.

The ground workers' union reported the worker passed out in the cargo bay while he was securing two animals. It wasn't his job to deal with live animals. The worker had started working that day about 90 minutes earlier and had attended to 4 aircraft.

On Oct 18th 2016 Portugal's GPIAA reported that the cargo loading team consisted of three workers, a team leader and two staff. A fourth person, available to support any cargo loading team, can be assigned to the team, as was the case in this occurrence. It was this 4th person, that later could not be found on the premises of the airport. As the person was involved with loading D2-TEI and the aircraft had already departed, the crew of D2-TEI was informed. The crew decided to divert to Lisbon, performed a rapid descent and landed safely. The ground worker was found semi-conscious in the bulk cargo hold also assigned to transporting live animals and thus featuring pressurization, ventilation, temperature control (18-24 degrees C), humidity control and CO2 control. The ground worker was taken to a hospital. The GPIAA is waiting for testimonies of those involved in the occurrence to draw up safety recommendations to avoid similiar situations.
Incident Facts

Date of incident
Oct 1, 2016

Classification
Accident

Flight number
DT-655

Destination
Luanda, Angola

Aircraft Registration
D2-TEI

Aircraft Type
Boeing 777-300

ICAO Type Designator
B773

This article is published under license from Avherald.com. © of text by Avherald.com.
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