A Spirit Airlines flight from LaGuardia Airport in New York City to Fort Lauderdale, Florida was diverted to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina when several passengers complained of burning throats, chest pains, and a foul odor that was described as “dirty socks.”
All 220 passengers had to deplane at Myrtle Beach, and seven to 10 passengers needed transportation to the hospital, according to NBC News.
Officials suppose that the odor and passenger sickness was linked to some sort of chemical on the aircraft, but nothing out of the ordinary was found.
“Reports are we have several occupants on a plane exposed to an unknown substance,” Myrtle Beach Fire Rescue said, according to NBC News. “They have deplaned and are currently on the ramp. We have isolated and are attempting to get in contact with the airport fire.”
“After specific monitoring and hazmat crews entering into the fuselage no substances were found,” Myrtle Beach Fire Department Lt. Christian Sliker told NBC News. “The plane is all clear.”
Passenger were able to board a different plane in South Carolina and landed in Ft. Lauderdale around 5 a.m. on Friday.
Spirit Airlines is still investigating the cause of the odor. It’s unclear, at the moment, if the “dirty socks” smell, in fact, was coming from someone’s actual dirty socks.
Considering that some rude plane passengers remove their shoes and socks in flight, this may be worth looking into.