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Singaporean investigators analyse recorders from turbulence-hit flight


The inside of Singapore Airlines flight SQ321 is pictured after an emergency touchdown at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi International Airport, in Bangkok, Thailand May 21, 2024.
| Photo Credit: Reuters

Singaporean investigators are analysing a cockpit voice recorder and a flight information recorder after one passenger died and greater than 100 have been injured when a Singapore Airlines aircraft hit extreme turbulence this week, the nation’s transport minister stated on Friday.

Passengers and crew aboard flight SQ321 suffered cranium, mind and backbone accidents once they have been thrown violently across the cabin throughout Tuesday’s terrifying high-altitude ordeal.

The London-to-Singapore flight carrying 211 passengers and 18 crew was compelled to make an emergency touchdown in Bangkok, the place at the least 48 persons are nonetheless being handled in hospital.

Flight monitoring information reveals the Boeing 777-300ER plunged 1,800 metres (6,000 ft) in only a few minutes, with passengers saying it occurred so all of the sudden there was no time for a lot of to lock their seatbelts.

“We have a team that went to Bangkok and they have obtained the data from the cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder,” Singapore’s Transport Minister Chee Hong Tat stated in a press release.

“They are going through the data from these two recorders now to be able to ascertain what happened during those moments. So, we await investigation findings to understand what happened during that time.”

Singapore Airlines stated earlier on Friday it has tightened seatbelt guidelines on its flights after the incident and that it has launched a “more cautious approach” to turbulence.

“In addition to the suspension of hot beverage service when the seat belt sign is on, the meal service will also be suspended,” it stated in a press release to AFP.

“SIA will continue to review our processes as the safety of our passengers and crew is of utmost importance.”

Investigators from the United States have additionally travelled to Thailand to analyze the reason for the incident.

Air security consultants have instructed AFP that passengers are sometimes too informal about sporting seatbelts, leaving them in danger if the aircraft hits surprising turbulence.

Scientists additionally warn that so-called clear air turbulence, which is invisible to radar, is getting worse due to local weather change.

Absolute carnage

The director of Bangkok’s Samitivej Srinakarin hospital, the place many of the injured have been handled, stated his workers had by no means handled such extreme accidents attributable to turbulence.

Australian passenger Keith Davis described the ordeal, which left his spouse Kerry with a extreme spinal damage and no feeling beneath the waist.

“It was absolute carnage, instantly. It was absolutely surreal. You know, there’s no warning,” he instructed Australian broadcaster Channel 9.

“Before we knew it we were on the ceiling. And then bang, we’re on the ground. And you don’t know what is going on. And you’ve literally fallen 6,000 feet (1,829 metres).”

Davis stated his spouse hit the doorways of the overhead baggage lockers earlier than falling to the ground of the aisle and was unable to maneuver for the remainder of the flight.

The aircraft was met at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport by emergency responders who used gurneys to ferry the injured to ambulances ready on the tarmac.

Photos taken contained in the aircraft after it landed in Bangkok present the cabin in chaos, strewn with meals, drinks and baggage, and with oxygen masks dangling from the ceiling.

Singapore Airlines chief govt Goh Choon Phong has apologised for the “traumatic experience” and expressed condolences to the household of the deceased – a 73-year-old British man.

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