Com­mode ripped off as se­vere tur­bu­lence hits Air In­dia flight

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - Times Nation - [email protected] times­

Mum­bai: An Air In­dia flight from Delhi to Vi­jayawada hit se­vere tur­bu­lence that ripped off the com­mode in one of the lava­to­ries, while the aisle in the pas­sen­ger cabin was left lit­tered with meal trays.

A cou­ple of cabin crew mem­bers re­ceived mi­nor in­juries, said sources. The in­ci­dent oc­curred on Septem­ber 17 on­board AI-467, which took off from Delhi around 7pm.

“In­flight meal ser­vice was on when the air­craft hit tur­bu­lence. It was so se­vere that it up­set the plas­tic meal trays, send­ing them fly­ing to the roof and then crash­ing into the aisle. A com­mode flew off its base. The air­craft must have dropped sharply and sud­denly,” said the source. “In this sea­son, it’s com­mon to ex­pe­ri­ence tur­bu­lence on most routes. But this was an ex­treme case. The pas­sen­gers must have been trau­ma­tised,” the source added. An Air In­dia spokesper­son con­firmed the in­ci­dent and said no one aboard was in­jured.

The satel­lite cloud map for the day shows a thick band of se­vere thun­der­storm clouds stretch­ing from Kurnool in Andhra Pradesh up north to Hy­der­abad and then north­east to­wards Ja­balpur and Patna. Based on data from flightrada­r24, the tricky bit for the four-year old A320 air­craft (VT-EXA) ap­pears to have been the last 30-40 min­utes be­fore it landed at Vi­jayawada.

“Just be­fore reach­ing Vi­jayawada, they’ve flown a route which lay be­tween two cu­mu­lonim­bus (Cb) clouds,’’ said Capt Amit Singh, Fel­low, Royal Aero­nau­ti­cal So­ci­ety, Lon­don. Air­craft, even the most ad­vanced and heavy jets, avoid fly­ing close to Cb clouds. In the case of flight AI-467, it ap­pears that it wasn’t pos­si­ble to avoid fly­ing close to the Cb clouds, said Capt Singh.

The tur­bu­lence sent meal trays fly­ing to the roof and then crash­ing into the aisle

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