File photo: According to ABC News, recordings reveal the pilot told air traffic control that he feared there were toxic fumes on board.

London - A British Airways plane had to make an emergency landing when the crew fell ill.

Initial reports suggested the three pilots and 22 crew on the A380 flight from San Francisco to London, which diverted to Vancouver on Monday, suffered smoke inhalation.

BA later denied this, but refused to release more details, saying only that they will carry out an investigation.

But according to ABC News, recordings reveal the pilot told air traffic control that he feared there were toxic fumes on board.

Some of the 400 passengers later claimed they began coughing, while others wrote on social media that crew members were wearing oxygen masks.

When the plane landed, the pilots and crew were taken to hospital. But passengers claimed BA did not tell them this – and said they should have been offered treatment too.

Sarah Johnson, whose mother Diana, 73, was on the flight, said the air traffic recording was “very distressing”.

BA said the recording would be “part of our investigation”. It said “no customers reported feeling unwell at the time or since”, and that the whole crew went to hospital after only a few felt sick, but “were quickly discharged”.