I'm an airline pilot – there's a surprising way that plane toilets are emptied…and flight crew actually LOVE doing it | The Sun
A PILOT has revealed how a plane's toilets were emptied – and why it was a strangely popular job with ground crew.
The revelation comes as a Canadian aircraft captain published his memoir on his experiences from the cockpit.
The book, This is your captain speaking, is a must-read that delves into the many urban myths passengers dream up after flying.
However, one of the most hotly debated airplane topics was the method of waste disposal.
Doug Morris, author and veteran Air Canada Dreamliner captain, has now revealed where the faeces goes.
The pilot claimed that lavatories on planes were actually serviced at airports.
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And that the waste was flushed to holding tanks at the rear of the plane.
He said: "There is an access panel near the rear (no pun intended) of the airplane to allow the holding tanks to be sucked of human sewage."
Morris also revealed the disposing of the waste was a sought after job.
He said: "If they [ground crew] get it, that becomes their only duty.
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"They drive from airplane rear to airplane rear with possible extended breaks.
"Special biohazard suits and masks are worn by these 'lavologists'.
"And the sewage must be 'dumped' at a designated biohazard site at the airport."
The captain later claimed toilet servicing was "a huge component of flight operations".
He said: "If a washroom is deemed unserviceable, it may not be an issue.
"However, charts are consulted to decide whether operations will be hindered.
"The number of passengers and duration of flight will dictate the number of required serviceable lavatories.
"Having washrooms go unserviceable on a long-haul flight could mean a diversion… yes, it’s that serious."
Morris said he had witnessed some memorable sights in his time as the flight crew were able to view the forward washroom in certain planes via cabin cameras.
He said: "First, many passengers take several seconds figuring out how the door works.
"Back in the day, it would be comparable to opening a phone booth… just push.
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"Then there are people venturing to the washroom in their bare feet or socks.
"That liquid on the floor may not be water – think turbulence and poor aim."
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