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Toilet Troubles Ground Plane of Plumbers

Nick B

If you ever found yourself surrounded by seven dozen plumbers you would at the very least feel comfortable that there wouldn’t be any plumbing problems, right?  Well unfortunately for the passengers of a Norwegian Air Shuttle flight earlier this year, that was not the case.  Soon after takeoff an issue with the toilets on the flight arose, forcing the pilot to turn around and return to the airport.  A non-story for any other flight, but this one happened to be transporting 84 plumbers on their way to a trade event.  Any one of them would have been happy to fix the toilets and keep the flight on schedule, but the issue needed to be addressed from the outside of the plane and as helpful as these guys were, none of them were going to head out there at 40,000 feet up.  Recognizing the irony and taking it in stride, the passengers found the typically annoying situation of a flight delay funny.  At the end of the day, they got to their destination three hours late, but with a good story to tell.



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5 Responses to Toilet Troubles Ground Plane of Plumbers

  1. John Crifasi says:

    Aircraft toilets run using a vacuum system. While on the ground a vacuum pump is used and in flight the tank is vented to outside air which is low pressure due to the altitude. A small squirt of liquid on the Teflon coated surface should be enough to make it fly towards the tank. I would guess the valve that vents to low pressure wasn’t working and I am not aware of there being any way of forcing the vacuum pump to run in flight.

    • Nick B says:

      Good insight John! It was just one of those situations where the pilot’s hand was forced. Still funny though.

  2. Vinnie says:

    Plus as hear on NPR “Wait, wait…dont tell me” the next available opening on their schedule was the Thursday of the following week at 2 pm.

  3. jeffrey says:

    Or the lavs never got dumped.. That would cause all of them to be inop.

  4. Cashme Morz says:

    How do you know there is a specialist in the house?
    The item they specialize in, isn’t working in that house. A mechanics car does not work proprely.
    I once worked at a place that designed fire sprinkler sytems for fire control. The owners of the business mentioned they should install a sprinkler system in their place of work, for demonstrating the system to potential customers. I commented to the owners that it also might be a good idea in case of fire. It would look extra bad if a fire sprinkler design office had a fire and there was no sprinkler system in place.

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