Turbulence on U.S. flight sent some flying into aircraft ceiling, passengers say

A flight from Phoenix to Honolulu carrying several people on holiday experienced severe turbulence shortly before landing, sending a number of people and objects uncontrolled flying around the cabin and injuring 11 people. officials and passengers said.

A total of 36 people received medical treatment after a turbulent Hawaiian Airlines flight Sunday for swellings, bruises and cuts, said Jim Ireland, director of Honolulu Emergency Medical Services. and nausea. Twenty people were taken to hospital, 11 of them in serious condition.

“We are also very happy and feel fortunate that there have been no deaths or other serious injuries. And we also very much hope that all will… make a full recovery,” Ireland said.

The US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said on Monday it would investigate the turbulence incident.

The full flight had nearly 300 people on board and carried many passengers vacationing in Hawaii, like Jacie Hayata Ano, who was on her way home.

“It’s just rock,” she told KHON-TV. “And then it quickly escalated to the point where we were so shaken that we almost flew out of our seats.”

‘She flew up and hit the ceiling’

Passenger Jodette Neely told NBC Today shows her seeing people banging their heads against the ceiling of the plane.

“I grabbed the front seat, the top of it, to hold on, even though I had my seat belt on,” she said.

Hawaiian Airlines CEO Jon Snook said such turmoil was unique and unusual, noting that the airline had not experienced anything like it in recent history. Three flight attendants were among the injured, he said.

Passenger Kaylee Reyes told Hawaii News Now that her mother had just sat down when the storm hit and couldn’t fasten her seat belt.

“She flew up and hit the ceiling,” Reyes said.

Two first responders can be seen through the open back door of an ambulance parked outside a report.
In this image taken from video provided by Hawaii News Now, ambulances are shown outside the international airport in Honolulu after multiple people were seriously injured during a flight from Phoenix. (Hawaii News Now/The Associated Press)

Jazmin Bitanga, who was also on her way home for the holidays, said there have been two descents, one of which was so strong that her boyfriend’s water bottle hit the ceiling of the plane.

She told Hawaii News Now: “I turned around and there were a few people bleeding and straining. “Around me, there are people crying.”

Snook said there was some damage inside the plane during the turbulence. He said seat belt signs were on at the time, although some of the injured were not wearing seat belts.

Thomas Vaughan, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Honolulu, said there was a weather advisory for thunderstorms including Oahu and areas that could include flight paths at the time of turbulence. .

Snook said the airline was aware of the weather forecast as well as unstable weather and air conditions, but did not warn that the specific airspace where the turbulence occurred “is dangerous by any means.” how”.

He did not know how much altitude the plane lost in the turbulence, saying that would be part of an investigation involving the NTSB. The plane’s flight data recorder will provide those details, he said.

He said the investigation will also address exactly what passengers and crew were doing at the time.

The pilot tried to land immediately after the incident

He said the Airbus A330-200 began descending shortly after the turbulence and the crew declared an emergency because of the number of people injured on board. The air traffic controller gave priority to the flight landing.

Snook said the plane will undergo a thorough inspection and maintenance process, mainly repairing parts in the cabin.

SEE l 2019 Air Canada in-flight turbulence and injuries report:

35 people injured due to severe turbulence on Air Canada flight

An Air Canada flight encountered severe turbulence en route to Sydney, Australia, injuring 35 passengers.

In 2019, 37 passengers and crew members were injured when an Air Canada flight from Vancouver to Sydney experienced severe turbulence for about two hours via Hawaii. The Boeing 777-200 was diverted to Honolulu, where the injured were treated. Thirty people were taken to hospital and nine were seriously injured.

Most people associate turbulence with major storms. But the most dangerous type is called fresh air turbulence. Wind shear can occur in thin cirrus clouds or even in fresh air near thunderstorms, because differences in temperature and pressure create fast-moving air currents.

Aircraft may fly into turbulence without prior warning.

The NTSB, while announcing the poll, tweeted a link to its 2021 report on disturbanceswhich details a list of recommendations including a number of enhanced and centralized communication procedures involving crew and air traffic controllers in relation to meteorological advice.

Wearing a seat belt will protect you from the most serious consequences, the report said.

“Of the 123 passengers and flight attendants who were seriously injured in turbulence-related accidents that occurred between 2009 and 2018, only one passenger was recorded wearing a seat belt during the turbulence event. chaos,” the report said.


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