Flight Diverts To Shannon With Ill Passenger

Photo (c) Shannon Airport Group

A transatlantic flight has resumed its journey after diverting to Shannon Airport earlier to seek medical attention for a sick passenger.

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines flight KML-171 was travelling from Amsterdam in The Netherlands to Willemstad on the Dutch Caribbean island of Curaçao. There were 273 passengers and crew on board the Boeing 777-300 jet.

The flight was north of Wales and about to route through Irish air space when the crew contacted air traffic controllers in Shannon to advise them they might need to divert to the Midwest airport.


The flight crew reported they had a male passenger on board who had fallen ill. It’s understood there was a doctor on board the flight who rendered assistance while the crew was also in contact with the airline’s own medical professionals.

The flight crew later declared a medical emergency and confirmed they would need to divert to Shannon.

At Shannon, the airport’s fire and rescue service was placed on standby ahead of the flight’s arrival after the crew confirmed they would be making an overweight landing.

The National Ambulance Service was also alerted and requested to mobilise resources to the airport.

The flight landed at 2.43pm and was met at the terminal by ambulance paramedics. It’s understood that the passenger was assessed at the airport before being removed by ambulance to University Hospital Limerick for further treatment.

The flight resumed its journey shortly after 6.00pm.