Commode ripped off as severe turbulence hits Air India flight
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