A Germanwings flight bound from Hanover, Germany, to Rome on Friday was forced to make an emergency landing in Venice when both a passenger and a crew member became ill, airport officials said.
Flight 3882 was carrying 149 people when it landed at Venice’s Marco Polo Airport. The flight, which was scheduled to arrive in Rome at 3:25 p.m. local time, was delayed to an 8:45 p.m. local time arrival.
“When we landed in Venice, the captain told us that two people were not well, a crew member and a passenger,” Eugenio Bartolini, a schoolteacher aboard the flight, told an Italian news agency. “We flew over the Alps and should have followed the route Verona-Bologna-Rome. We saw the plane progressively descend and finally the lagoon of Venice appeared, where we landed.”
Upon landing, said Bartolini, “The captain, speaking in English, told us that two people, a member of the crew and a passenger, had been taken ill and that was why he had decided to stop at Venice.”
Passengers disembarked in Venice and waited in an airport lounge while medical staff investigated the situation.
Several reports suggested that the illness suffered by the passenger was a panic attack, but Germanwings released a statement with different reason. “Two people, a passenger and a member of the crew, were struck by strong nausea and needed medical treatment,” Germanwings said in a statement.
The airline has been a mainstay in the news since co-pilot Andreas Lubitz deliberately crashed a Germanwings flight into the French Alps in March, killing all 150 on board.