Re: Exhaust fumes in aircraft cabin?

From: (Robert Dorsett)
Organization: Netcom Online Communications Services (408-241-9760 login: guest)
Date:         08 May 94 23:50:40 
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In article <airliners.1994.1179@ohare.Chicago.COM> Tony Heatwole <> writes:
>Earlier this week while waiting to take off at DFW (with 20 planes
>in front of us) I noticed a strong smell of exhaust fumes in the
>cabin. I've noticed this from time to time before, but the long
>wait made me think about it:
>    1. Where do the fumes come from?  The engines on my plane or
>       the planes in front of us? If the cabin air is being re-
>       circulated from bleed air from the engines, we shouldn't
>       be getting any of our own exhaust.

Right; they were coming from the planes in front of you.

>    2. While they were only slightly unpleasant, how bad are the
>       fumes in a case like this. In particular, how much carbon
>       monoxide is there likely to be in it?

I'd be less concerned about the carbon monoxide levels than the carcinogens
being introduced into the cabin: kerosene's highly toxic.  Probably not a 
problem for the average tourist, but how about the flight/cabin crew, 
frequent flyer, etc?

And a random tidbit of data: WHEN an airplane's own exhaust can enter the 
cabin.  On the 727, it's customary to shut down the #3 engine before 
starting the APU after landing.  Reason: the APU exhaust is located in the
right wing root, expels a great deal of smoke when started, and said smoke
gets ingested by the #3 engine.  This sudden introduction of smoke into the
cabin is reported to alarm passengers, for some reason. :-)

Robert Dorsett