|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1801 To 2400|
|Locale Reference||airport : atl|
|Altitude||agl bound lower : 0|
agl bound upper : 0
|Operator||common carrier : air carrier|
|Make Model Name||B727-200|
|Operating Under FAR Part||Part 121|
|Flight Phase||climbout : takeoff|
ground other : taxi
|Affiliation||company : air carrier|
|Function||flight crew : captain|
oversight : pic
|Qualification||pilot : flight engineer|
pilot : atp
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 200|
flight time total : 15000
flight time type : 3630
|Affiliation||company : air carrier|
|Function||flight crew : first officer|
|Qualification||pilot : commercial|
pilot : instrument
|Anomaly||other anomaly other|
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
|Resolutory Action||controller : issued new clearance|
|Air Traffic Incident||other|
As we were taking the runway (runway 27R, atl) for takeoff a slight lemon odor was noticed. Shortly after takeoff the odor became very strong. The forward lavatory was checked for the source of the odor (liquid hand soap, deodorant, etc), but it was determined that the odor could only be detected in the cockpit. The odor was very strong, was staying strong, and starting to bother our eyes. Maximum altitude reached during the trouble-shooting was about 20000 ft. A decision was made to return to atl. The crew then went on oxygen and a routine descent and landing was made back in atl. After clearing the runway the 2 cockpit windows were opened to vent the cockpit. The odor continued to be very strong all of the time airborne and during the taxi back to the terminal. The 'rainbow' rain repellent system was suspected, but an actual point source of the odor could not be determined. The rain repellent canister was removed from its location on the rear wall of the cockpit (B727-200), the system put on MEL and the flight was re- dispatched to ric with the same aircraft and crew. The odor continued to be noticed faintly on and off during the flight and gradually disappeared by arrival in ric (approximately 1 hour flight). Callback conversation with reporter revealed the following information: the reporter is not sure that the source of the 'lemon odor' was the rain repellent system. The airlines uses lemon scented products for several applications and the reporter is positive that the odor was of lemon not orange. In this case, once the rain repellent canister was removed the odor slowly dissipated until it was very faint by the end of the 45 min flight. The next morning the flight crew flew a different aircraft and it had no unusual odor, but the next aircraft, which was a different one again, had the same odor as the first, but not as strong. None of the crewmembers of the B727-200's had any unusual reactions from the 'odor' regardless of the source. Another captain told the reporter that he had discovered a lemon scented bathroom deodorizer in an aircraft cockpit recently.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: PRECAUTIONARY LNDG -- FLC OF AN ACR SUSPECTS THAT RAIN REPELLENT MAY BE LEAKING IN THE COCKPIT AND RETURNS TO LAND.
Narrative: AS WE WERE TAKING THE RWY (RWY 27R, ATL) FOR TKOF A SLIGHT LEMON ODOR WAS NOTICED. SHORTLY AFTER TKOF THE ODOR BECAME VERY STRONG. THE FORWARD LAVATORY WAS CHKED FOR THE SOURCE OF THE ODOR (LIQUID HAND SOAP, DEODORANT, ETC), BUT IT WAS DETERMINED THAT THE ODOR COULD ONLY BE DETECTED IN THE COCKPIT. THE ODOR WAS VERY STRONG, WAS STAYING STRONG, AND STARTING TO BOTHER OUR EYES. MAX ALT REACHED DURING THE TROUBLE-SHOOTING WAS ABOUT 20000 FT. A DECISION WAS MADE TO RETURN TO ATL. THE CREW THEN WENT ON OXYGEN AND A ROUTINE DSCNT AND LNDG WAS MADE BACK IN ATL. AFTER CLRING THE RWY THE 2 COCKPIT WINDOWS WERE OPENED TO VENT THE COCKPIT. THE ODOR CONTINUED TO BE VERY STRONG ALL OF THE TIME AIRBORNE AND DURING THE TAXI BACK TO THE TERMINAL. THE 'RAINBOW' RAIN REPELLENT SYS WAS SUSPECTED, BUT AN ACTUAL POINT SOURCE OF THE ODOR COULD NOT BE DETERMINED. THE RAIN REPELLENT CANISTER WAS REMOVED FROM ITS LOCATION ON THE REAR WALL OF THE COCKPIT (B727-200), THE SYS PUT ON MEL AND THE FLT WAS RE- DISPATCHED TO RIC WITH THE SAME ACFT AND CREW. THE ODOR CONTINUED TO BE NOTICED FAINTLY ON AND OFF DURING THE FLT AND GRADUALLY DISAPPEARED BY ARR IN RIC (APPROX 1 HR FLT). CALLBACK CONVERSATION WITH RPTR REVEALED THE FOLLOWING INFO: THE RPTR IS NOT SURE THAT THE SOURCE OF THE 'LEMON ODOR' WAS THE RAIN REPELLENT SYS. THE AIRLINES USES LEMON SCENTED PRODUCTS FOR SEVERAL APPLICATIONS AND THE RPTR IS POSITIVE THAT THE ODOR WAS OF LEMON NOT ORANGE. IN THIS CASE, ONCE THE RAIN REPELLENT CANISTER WAS REMOVED THE ODOR SLOWLY DISSIPATED UNTIL IT WAS VERY FAINT BY THE END OF THE 45 MIN FLT. THE NEXT MORNING THE FLC FLEW A DIFFERENT ACFT AND IT HAD NO UNUSUAL ODOR, BUT THE NEXT ACFT, WHICH WAS A DIFFERENT ONE AGAIN, HAD THE SAME ODOR AS THE FIRST, BUT NOT AS STRONG. NONE OF THE CREWMEMBERS OF THE B727-200'S HAD ANY UNUSUAL REACTIONS FROM THE 'ODOR' REGARDLESS OF THE SOURCE. ANOTHER CAPT TOLD THE RPTR THAT HE HAD DISCOVERED A LEMON SCENTED BATHROOM DEODORIZER IN AN ACFT COCKPIT RECENTLY.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of July 2007 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.