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A passenger dies after severe turbulence on a private business plane in the US, say aviation authorities


The strong turbulence suffered this Friday by a private business plane in the US "caused fatal injuries" to a passenger, according to aviation authorities.

Image of the air control facilities at Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks (Connecticut) in 2007. (Credit: George Ruhe / AP)

(CNN) --

One person died as a result of strong turbulence suffered this Friday by a private business plane that was diverted to Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, in Connecticut, United States, according to aviation authorities.

A Bombardier CL30 plane leaving Keene's Dillant-Hopkins Airport in New Hampshire for Leesburg Executive Airport in Virginia was diverted to the Connecticut airport around 4 p.m. Friday after "encountering severe turbulence," wrote the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in a statement to CNN.

That turbulence "caused fatal injuries" to a passenger, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) wrote on Twitter.

Three passengers and two crew members were on board the private plane, the NTSB wrote in a statement sent to CNN.

The condition of the other people is unknown.

There was no impact on airport operations, according to a statement from the Connecticut Airport Authority.


The Connecticut Office of the Chief Medical Examiner was scheduled to perform an autopsy on the deceased passenger on Saturday, a spokesperson told CNN.

The deceased person has not been publicly identified and no further information about him has been provided.

The FAA, NTSB and FBI will investigate the incident, according to statements by the FAA and the Connecticut State Police.

"Investigators have removed the cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder, and are continuing to collect information from the flight crew, operator, and other passengers," the NTSB wrote in its statement.

The NTSB will release a preliminary report within two to three weeks, the agency wrote in a statement.

Image of the air control facilities at Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks (Connecticut) in 2007. (Credit: George Ruhe / AP)

Yes, turbulence can cause deaths

Turbulence is the term for air movement that can give a plane a sudden jolt and can be particularly dangerous for people not wearing seat belts, according to the FAA.

From 2009 to 2021, 146 people aboard Part 121 companies - regular commercials - suffered a "serious injury" from turbulence, defined as an injury that requires hospitalization for more than two days, causes a bone fracture, causes severe bleeding or other damage, affects an internal organ or involves major burns, according to FAA data.

Of the 146 seriously injured, about 80% were crew members.

There have been no turbulence-related deaths on Part 121 airlines since 2009, according to NTSB data.

A 2009 CNN article noted that there had been three fatalities in turbulence-related crashes since 1980, according to the administration.

However, the private jet involved in Friday's deadly incident is considered a Part 91 carrier, a category of general aviation that includes a wide range of private jets, Sarah Taylor Sulick, a spokeswoman for the NTSB, told CNN.

There have been 38 turbulence-related deaths on Part 91 aircraft since 2009, and in nearly all of these incidents, turbulence caused a fatal crash, according to NTSB data.

  • Why could air turbulence get worse in the near future?

Although turbulence has not caused fatalities in air transport for more than a decade, it can carry serious risks.

Sara Nelson, a United flight attendant and president of the Association of Flight Attendants, a union that represents 50,000 flight attendants from 20 airlines, told CNN last year that flight attendants pushing 200-pound carts were most likely to suffer injuries.

"We have flight attendants who have been thrown through the ceiling and then fell back down multiple times, resulting in broken limbs. In the aisle, with unforeseen turbulence, we had people lose toes, or lose the ability to work, or suffered injuries that took them away from work for years," he explained.

Last week, seven people were taken to hospitals after suffering turbulence aboard a Lufthansa flight from Texas to Germany, an airport spokesman said.

A female passenger on board described the plane as moving like a roller coaster.

"During dinner service, all of a sudden there was wind shear, the plane went up in altitude, and then we dropped 1,000 feet," said passenger Susan Zimmerman.

"It was like unexpectedly free-falling for five seconds from the top of a roller coaster, dishes and glassware soaring toward the ceiling, and my bag off the floor flying behind me to the right."

And in December, at least 36 people on a Hawaiian Airlines flight were injured, including 20 taken to the emergency room, after their plane hit severe turbulence during a flight, authorities said.


Source: cnnespanol

All news articles on 2023-03-06

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