Air Canada flight hit by turbulence so severe flyers hit ceiling with 'blood everywhere'

Air Canada passengers experienced such violent turbulence they were thrown up to the ceiling of the aircraft in a shocking episode yesterday. The plane dropped suddenly when the turbulence hit the aircraft, injuring 37 passengers and crew. The flight from Vancouver to Sydney had to divert to Honolulu, Hawaii following the incident. Footage from inside the plane shows oxygen masks hanging from the place and cabin crew tending to hurt flyers.

“The plane just dropped,” passenger Stephanie Beam told The Associated Press (AP).

“When we hit turbulence, I woke up and looked over to make sure my kids were buckled.

“The next thing I knew there’s just literally bodies on the ceiling of the plane.”

Another passenger told the agency there was “a lot of blood everywhere.”

Air Canada have described yesterday’s incident as “un-forecasted and sudden turbulence.”

Thirty people were taken to hospital with nine having serious injuries, emergency responders told AP.

According to Honolulu Emergency Services Department spokeswoman Shayne Enright, injuries included cuts, bumps, bruises, neck pain and back pain.

Air Canada said passengers were accommodated in hotels and the flight to Sydney is scheduled to depart today.

An airline told “Air Canada flight AC33, travelling from Vancouver to Sydney, Australia, on July 11, encountered un-forecasted and sudden turbulence approximately two hours past Hawaii, and subsequently diverted to Honolulu. The flight landed normally at 0645 local time.

“All people have now been assessed, treated and released by local hospitals and are accommodated in Hotels.

“The flight to Sydney, AU is planned to resume today, July 12. The aircraft was a Boeing 777-200, with 269 passengers and 15 crew on board.”

So what is turbulence? Airline pilot Patrick Smith explained in his book Cockpit Confidential: “A plane cannot be flipped upside down, thrown into a tailspin or otherwise flung from the sky by even the 

“Conditions might be annoying and uncomfortable, but the plane is not going to crash.”

Turbulence is graded on a scale of severity: light, moderate, severe and extreme.

Extreme is rare but still not dangerous, although the plane will subsequently be examined by maintenance staff.

It’s key to follow crew’s orders and wear a seatbelt when turbulence hits as the majority of injuries are caused by people who fall or are thrown about because they weren’t strapped in properly.

If you want to limit the effects of turbulence the smoothest place to sit is over the wings, said Smith, it’s “nearest to the plane’s centre of lift and gravity.

Steer clear of the rows of seats at the back closest to the tail as “the knocking and swaying is more pronounced.”


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