The horrifying details were recounted by Councillor Karen Davies said at a meeting of the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead’s aviation forum after a furious constituent contacted her
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A man was “splattered in a very unpleasant way” after a plane dumped human sewage on his garden, a council meeting was told.
Councillor Karen Davies said at a meeting of the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead’s aviation forum that a constituent has contacted her about the “dreadful” incident.
Cllr Davies, the member for the Clewer East ward, said the man – who hasn’t been named – and his garden was “‘splattered in a very unpleasant way”.
The resident said human waste was dropped from a plane passing overhead in Windsor, which is one of the main flight paths in and out of Heathrow Airport.
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He said it happened mid-July – when flights were still reduced amid the pandemic.
Cllr Davies said: “His whole garden and garden umbrellas, and he were all covered.”
Aeroplane toilets store passengers’ waste in special tanks and are normally emptied once the plane has landed.
She told the forum: “I know a number of incidents happen every year with frozen sewage from planes, but this wasn’t frozen and his whole garden was splattered in a very unpleasant way.
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“He was out in the garden at the time, so a really horrible, horrible experience.”
She added: “Hopefully it never happens again to any of our residents.”
John Bowden, the councillor for Eton and Castle – covering Windsor Castle – called it a “one in a billion chance”.
He suggested the “warm weather meant the excrement could have come out as a more fluidy item”.
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Whitfield parish councillor Geoff Paxton, who has worked at airports for 40 years, said what happened was “very rare” and one he had not seen in a long time.
He said: “We used to have problems with blue ice (frozen human waste and disinfectant) on arrivals but that was because those toilets used to leak.”
He went on to explain that vacuum toilets in modern aircraft were much more secure.
However, if planes were below 6,000ft, as they would be when landing and taking off, the air pressure was less and “it could well be that something came out of the vent at low altitude”.
Windsor resident Andrew Hall, who was present at the virtual meeting, said water companies were “fined millions” when discharging sewage into rivers.
He added: “When an aircraft dispatches it onto people’s heads I think that’s more heinous, frankly.”
Cllr Davies said the resident had decided not to pursue an insurance claim.
The name of the airline has not been revealed though she said it was “based a very long way away from here”.
She added that the resident contacted the airline, which denied its plane was in the area, but later confirmed it when the resident was able to identify the aircraft via a route tracking app.
The Civil Aviation Authority has been contacted for comment.