Flight attendant shares terrifying meaning behind secret crew call

As a passenger sits patiently for their desired destination, it is the responsibility of the cabin crew to ensure the safety of everyone’s lives on board. Despite the rhetoric that it is much safer to travel by plane than a car, serious accidents and emergencies could occur at any time during a flight.

An anonymous flight attendant revealed to Express.co.uk the meaning behind an ominous flight call which would cause the crew and passengers to shudder with fear.

The British attendant said: “A scary code for the crew would be – ‘could a CSD (Cabin Service Director) report to the flight deck immediately’ or ‘could a senior member of crew report to the deck’. It’s a call made by the captain or the first officer – depending on the situation. And this could mean a number of things.

“It could be a medical emergency up in the flight deck, it could be that we’re going to have a tough landing. Or It could be something more sinister… like we’ve gotten a call, that something on the plane.

“It basically means there’s an emergency and we need to talk to someone.”

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The air hostess said that it is a secret code amongst staff because “the flight crew do not have time to be kind of calling around every door to find out where the manager of the crew is, and that they just need them in there right now” without disruption and panic from passengers. 

During flight operations, crews have to manage different situations that vary in their complexities. The Skybrary revealed crews will follow the Threat and Error Management (TEM) model to manage potential threats and safety issues.

There are three different types of threats flight attendants face: “Anticipated threats for example, weather-related incidents, Unexpected threats such as in-flight aircraft malfunction and Latent threats which include “equipment design issues, optical illusions, or shortened turn-around schedules.” 

The flight attendant reassured the crew are indeed prepared for any incident: “We get medical training, fire training, and emergency procedure training, which we are tested on constantly.”

In sinister cases such as bomb threats, a Ryanair pilot revealed to the Daily Mirror: “On every airplane there’s a place that we designate to put a bomb if we find one […] I’ll leave it at that.”

According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), in 2022, there was only one accident every 0.83 million flights, with a total of five fatal accidents involving passengers and crew.

The flight attendant added: “It really does not happen often, I’ve been there for a while and I’ve never had a senior crew report to the flight deck.”

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