Cat Discovered In Cockpit Of Stored EL AL 737

Filed Under: El Al

Here’s something you don’t see every day…

Cat spotted in EL AL 737 cockpit

Yesterday (Sunday) a cat was discovered in the cockpit of an EL AL Boeing 737-900 that was in storage. Workers at Ben Gurion Airport in Israel noticed a cat through cockpit windows in a plane that had been parked for well over a week.

At that point efforts were made to release the cat. The cat did significant damage to the cockpit of the plane, due to scratching and/or chewing. I also can’t imagine what the odor in the cockpit was like.

How long had the cat been in the cockpit?

The EL AL Boeing 737 in question has the registration code 4X-EHB. The plane last flew to Dubai and back on Wednesday, January 24, before going into storage.

Not much is known about how the cat got into the cockpit of the parked 737:

  • Was this a feral cat, or someone’s pet that somehow got left behind?
  • How did the cat get into the plane, and was it in there since January 24, or did it somehow get into the plane since then?
  • Was the cockpit door locked, meaning the cat was actually restricted to the cockpit, or did it have access to the entire cabin?
  • If the cat was in the plane since January 24, how did it survive for so long without water (and to a lesser extent food)?

Israel has a lot of feral cats, so it seems most likely to me that the cat entered the plane while it was being prepared for storage on January 24, and it wasn’t spotted by workers.

While there are plenty of cat puns to be made here, I just feel so bad for the cat. It would appear the cat was alive when discovered — hopefully it is given some water and food, and can recover fully. Good thing it was found when it was, or else it may not have been alive.

Bottom line

A cat was spotted in the cockpit of an EL AL 737 that had been parked for around 11 days. While the cat did some significant damage to the cockpit, fortunately it seemed to be found alive, and hopefully it’s going to be okay, despite the lack of food and water supply. Now EL AL has some work to do to fix the cockpit damage…

(Featured image courtesy of Jakkrit Prasertwit)

  1. Well, I have seen cockroaches and mice on planes many times (admittedly not on El AL but still on so-called” Firts Tier” airlines which I shall not name), so why not?

    A healthy cat, by the way, should have no problem surviving for 2 weeks without food or water. Obviously painful and not recommended, but not killing. The damage to the plane, by the way, is probably extensive as the cat will have chewed anything available. A leather seat will give some protein.

  2. @Pierre: “A healthy cat, by the way, should have no problem surviving for 2 weeks without food or water.”

    Food, possibly … but definitely not water 😮

  3. Israel had been under a lock down due to Covid, including Tel Aviv international, for over a week now, and even before it, traffic there was reduced significantly. A cat in the cockpit, and wild animals walking free on empty streets. Like in other Covid-stricken countries in the world.

  4. I remember reading a story (rough recollection, so my facts may not be 100%) about a cat that was found alive in a shipping crate or container after a journey across the Atlantic. Cat had been trapped/stuck inside for weeks.

  5. There are stray cats EVERYWHERE in Israel, perhaps you noticed when you visited, they are even in the middle of the dessert, I am not surprised they are at the airport, the question is how it got into the plane, perhaps when the door was open on the tarmac for a long period of time

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