Fly­ers text kin as plane plunges 30,000 ft in 7 min

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - Times Global - He­len Cof­fey

Pas­sen­gers on­board a Delta Air Lines flight were left fear­ing for their lives af­ter the plane plunged al­most 30,000ft in just seven min­utes. Flight 2353 was trav­el­ling from At­lanta to Fort Laud­erdale in Florida when the in­ci­dent oc­curred, prompt­ing pas­sen­gers to text loved ones in prepa­ra­tion. “God Bless the Cap­tain and crew,” tweeted one flyer. “I texted my wife and dad I loved them. Told my mom I love her and hugged my son.” He posted pic­tures of the plane cabin, in which oxy­gen masks can be seen hang­ing from the ceil­ing.

Wit­nesses told WSB-TV that trav­ellers were told re­peat­edly “do not panic” by a flight at­ten­dant over the tan­noy. Pas­sen­ger Har­ris De­woskin said, “there was a scary 60 to 90 sec­onds where we re­ally didn’t know what was go­ing on”.

Flight track­ing web­site Flight Aware shows the mo­ment the air­craft dropped through the air, in what Delta de­scribed as a “con­trolled de­scent”. At around 38 min­utes in, the plane’s al­ti­tude fell from 38,000ft to 10,000ft within the space of seven min­utes. The flight then di­verted to Tampa where fly­ers de­planed as nor­mal. A Delta Air Lines spokesper­son said: “(The flight was) di­verted out of an abun­dance of cau­tion and landed with­out in­ci­dent fol­low­ing a cabin pres­suri­sa­tion ir­reg­u­lar­ity en route.” The air­craft is be­ing eval­u­ated by main­te­nance tech­ni­cians.

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