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29 February 2024

Can anyone fly a plane? Passengers shocked as pilot shouts for help after heart attack

By Staff

What could be worse than a pilot announcing 30,000 feet above ground level, “Does anyone in the cabin have flight experience?”

For the passengers of United Airlines it seemed a matter of life and death when they heard two announcements made by the pilot, KTLA5 reported.

A nurse from Camarillo, Linda Alweiss rushed to the pilot’s aid when she heard him requesting for assistance from anyone who had medical training.

When Linda reached the cockpit, she saw the pilot slumped over and murmuring over the microphone and noted the irregularity in his heart beat, perhaps as a result of a heart attack.

The next announcement was requesting for a passenger who had  flight experience.

“I turned to the co-pilot and I asked her, ‘You know how to land the plane, right?’ And she said yes,” Alweiss said.

“I felt immediately comfortable. That was just one thing I didn’t have to think about, so I could focus more on what was going on with the patient.”

With decades of experience and the support of another young nurse, Amy Sorenson on board, they set up a diagnostic defibrillator and administered an IV.

The plane landed safely in Omaha and pilot survived the attack.

“She did her job,” said Alweiss’ husband, Alan. “She jumped at the opportunity, didn’t hesitate. And she did it at 30,000 feet, knowing that the person who was supposed to be flying the plane was her patient.”