A Thai Airways plane flying from Indonesia to Thailand was hit by turbulence so bad, six passengers had to be hospitalized April 11.
“That was THE most scariest flight of my life!” SarahJayne Edwards, 39, said in a letter she wrote to her husband she began writing “in case something happened," reports the Daily Mail. “Two hours in and we had awful turbulence and no notice. We went up and down several times, everything went flying to the roof. Ppl cut their heads, it was sooooo frightening!”
Edwards was on the plane with her equally terrified child.
“I grabbed AsiaLilly and cuddled her and told her we had hit a raincloud so it was going to feel like a rollercoaster. Broke my heart when she said "mummy I'm scared!" she continued in the letter.
Tension escalated when one passenger began bleeding all over his seat.
“Yes, it was blood [on the seat]. The man looked like an Indian guy and he had a nasty gash to his head. There were several calls for a doctor to make themselves known to the crew if there was one,” Edwards said.
The airline explained the passenger had not been wearing his seatbelt and thus was “flown into the air and hit his head.”
Five cabin crew members were also injured.
The airline delivered a public apology to those affected.
“The company apologizes to passengers who were involved in the incident. The company has paid the cost of medical treatment for passengers and staff injured. All those who were hurt on the aircraft have returned home from hospital,” Thai Airways President Charamporn Jotikasthira said.
While alarming, experts urge passengers not to worry about something like this happening to them.
Expert Patrick Smith, an active airline pilot and writer, explains on his website, AskThePilot.com, that turbulence is simply a normal part of flying they cannot control. However, people don’t need to fear so long as they keep their seatbelts on.
“Planes themselves are engineered to take a remarkable amount of punishment, and they have to meet stress limits for both positive and negative G-loads. The level of turbulence required to dislodge an engine or bend a wing spar is something even the most frequent flyer—or pilot for that matter—won’t experience in a lifetime of traveling,” he said.