Two Cathay Pacific Airways captains lost their eyesight on separate flights earlier this year, Today Online reports.
Their co-pilots had to take command of their aircraft and issue urgent calls to air traffic control before landing safely.
One captain was flying an Airbus A350 from Perth, Australia, to Hong Kong on February 21 when he told the co-pilot that he felt out of breath and his vision was impaired.
He then declared that he was incapacitated, according to a preliminary report by the Air Accident Investigation Authority.
The plane, carrying 270 passengers and 13 crew members, was flying over Manila at 6:00 am, and the first officer took command.
The captain was given oxygen and the crew sought help from a passenger who was a medical professional, while asking the company doctor in Hong Kong for advice. The plane landed safely in Hong Kong.
On January 26, the captain on a flight between Sapporo and Hong Kong suffered a sudden loss of visual acuity for about 30 minutes, another preliminary report said. The Boeing 777 was carrying 348 passengers and 16 crew. The co-pilot landed the plane safely in Hong Kong.
Both pilots were highly experienced. Hong Kong’s aviation incident authority is investigating.