A number of media outlets in the United States are reporting the heartbreaking news that cleaners onboard an American Airlines plane at La Guardia airport in Queens, New York found a dead baby in one of the plane’s lavatory’s this morning. It’s not known how long the baby had been in the toilet before being discovered by ground staff.
According to flight tracking website, FlightRadar24, the Airbus A321 single-aisle aircraft arrived at La Guardia at about 22:30 pm on Monday night, having taken off from Charlotte in North Carolina around an hour and a half before. The gruesome discovery was not made until the following morning.
According to an American Airlines spokesperson in comments made to CNN, a cleaning crew discovered what appeared to be a baby foetus. It’s not known whether any arrests have been made in connection with the incident.
The same aircraft on which the foetus was discovered had also travelled between Charlotte and Philadephia, as well as San Juan before it’s final flight to La Guardia. Of course, the aircraft should have been cleaned between all of these flights but it’s not entirely clear where the foetus was discovered within the lavatory.
The aircraft is still on the ground as investigators carry out a detailed examination although the plane is scheduled to re-enter service later this evening.
This isn’t the first time the body of a dead baby has been discovered onboard a plane. Only two weeks ago, a woman was held by police in Delhi after the body of a dead baby was discovered in the lavatory of an AirAsia India plane.
It’s suspected that the woman had given birth during the flight and then hid the body in the toilet’s waste bin. On that occasion, cabin crew made the grisly discovery as they were preparing to land.
And in another incident, the body of a newborn child was discovered in the lavatory of an Etihad Airways flight between Abu Dhabi and the Indonesian capital of Jarkata in January. Police arrested a 37-year old domestic worker who they suspected had secretly given birth to the child during the flight.
The woman, who was bleeding heavily after the birth, had to be treated by cabin crew before the flight was diverted to Bangkok. The dead baby, however, wasn’t found until the plane reached its final destination.