British Airways plane forced to turn back to Heathrow over 'pungent smell from toilet'

The pilot apparently insisted that there was no technical problem with the plane

A town councillor from Hertfordshire has said that his British Airways flight to Dubai was forced to turn back to London due to a potent odour emanating from an overflowing toilet.

Abhishek Sachdev, who represents Potters Bar Parkfield in Hertsmere, told MailOnline Travel: “The pilot made an announcement requesting senior cabin crew and we knew something was a bit odd.

“About 10 minutes later he said you may have noticed there’s quite a pungent smell coming from one of the toilets.

“He said it was liquid faecal excrement, those are the words he used. He said it was not a technical fault with the plane, and he was very adamant about this.”

The Captain apparently told passengers that the plane’s crew had examined the problem but were unable to fix the issue and said that they would be returning to London for health and safety reasons.

Initially they were told that they would board another flight within three hours, but it turned into a 15-hour delay, said Mr Sachdev, who was travelling with his pregnant wife and their two-year-old daughter, Shravani.

He said the airline offered an apology alongside providing hotel accommodation and food vouchers but claimed that BA ground staff were unprepared and told the travellers to contact the Civil Aviation Authority for compensation.

Mr Sachdev, who wasn’t seated near the toilet in question, said passengers departed for Dubai yesterday at 1pm.

He said: “It’s obviously disappointing to lose a whole day of your trip. You might expect it on some random airline, but you wouldn’t expect it from BA.”

Comments