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HolidayTravelWatch Launches Global Petition on Aerotoxic Syndrome


HolidayTravelWatch today launches its Global Petition against Flight Smoke or Fume Events in Aircraft Cabins, which give rise to a condition known as Aerotoxic Syndrome.

We have written extensively on this issue, highlighting the physical effects on consumers, and providing comment on the political debate on this matter.

We are concerned that there appears to be a ’lukewarm’ political response to this matter, particularly from the British Government.

We note and support the call by the Global Cabin Air Quality Executive (GCQAE) for a public enquiry on this matter, and the call by the main Opposition Parties in support of this measure. We also note the Early Day Motion (EDM) created by Paul Flynn MP, which raises concern on this issue and the lack of scientific action. To date, the EDM has only been signed by 63 Members of Parliament.

HolidayTravelWatch has decided to highlight the issue by creating a Global Petition. The campaign created by HolidayTravelWatch is entitled the ’Brown Bag Campaign’. The inspiration for this title arose from documentation, seen by HolidayTravelWatch, which suggested to a Parliamentary Committee, that the incidents giving rise to the ’aerotoxic condition’ could be subscribed to ’hyperventilation’! We took the view, based on the complaints we have received, that to liken the physical and psychological complaints to a minor breathing difficulty, to be obscene, and perhaps reflective of how scientists, industry and governments approach this very serious problem.

The petition sets out the background to this issue and calls on Governments and the Aviation Industry to create a safer flying environment for all, and to spend £10 - 20k on each aircraft, installing filters to remove the risk associated with smoke or fume events, either in the aircraft cabin or cockpit.

Frank Brehany , the MD of HolidayTravelWatch states:

“We continue to receive calls from worried consumers on this issue. It is ridiculous that the political and industrial will appears to be driven by what they claim is a lack of proof. In a recent Facebook small survey (9/11/07), we discovered that 15% of those surveyed had experienced fumes or smoke in the aircraft cabin, and, 5% reported that they had suffered illness following exposure to flight smoke or a fume event on board an aircraft. We note that the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) collate the number of aircraft movements throughout the UK. In January 2008, there were 264,083 aircraft movements. If you translate our survey into the January 2008 data, this would suggest that some 39,612 aircraft, throughout the UK, suffered a flight smoke or fume event. What happened to those flight reports (usually recorded in the format of a Mandatory Occurrence Report), and what happened to the crew and passengers who reported, or who have suffered ill-health effects since their exposure? Is this a risk we can afford to take whilst the great and the good discuss these issues in the rarified air of a committee room? In my view it is simple, there is a clear risk, let’s confront the risk now, let’s err on the side of caution, let’s take proactive action to protect the live’s of passengers and crew around the world. I call on all concerned parties, from whichever country you may reside, to sign our petition today - show them that you want safer flights today!”

Note to Editors: The Global ’Brown Bag Campaign’ Petition can be accessed through On the home page, on the right hand campaign navigation bar, access can be gained to the petition by clicking on the ’Brown Bag Petition’ button.

All Holidaymakers affected by any of these issues should call the National Helpline 08450179229 or make contact through the Organisation’s website – HolidayTravelWatch is a National Consumer Organisation which provides information, advice and assistance to the holidaymaker or independent traveller, who experiences problems with their travel arrangements. In eleven years 130,000 people have benefited from the help provided by HolidayTravelWatch, with over 46% being empowered to resolve their own claims by the information the organisation provides on their consumer rights. HolidayTravelWatch has campaigned in the past for improvements in travel safety and is proud to have been associated with some of the leading broadcast and print media projects aimed at informing the consumer. HolidayTravelWatch continues with that campaigning spirit and continues to work closely with the media and government departments alike.

Full details of the work of HolidayTravelWatch can be found on

For further information on this press release and any other associated matters please contact Frank Brehany on 08450179229



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