Turbulence still a danger for airlines

It is “one of the last really big hazards” in air travel

Wind turbulence can jolt even biggest aircraft without warning, giving passengers serious injuries if they are at that moment without seatbelts. Air travel is arguably safer than it has ever been. But turbulence can jolt a plane by several metres during landing or take-off and a hundred metres while cruising. More than 10 people a year, and at least 63 since 2007, suffer serious injuries in the air due to turbulence, from broken ankles to fracturing ribs to torn ligaments. Many more get minor injuries. Planes are damaged too.
“It’s the last of the unanticipated threats,” Christopher Herbster, a professor at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Florida says. “It’s one of the last really big hazards for things you don’t know are out there.”
Despite the use of air-movement detection equipment, pilots warning other pilots about fast-changing weather conditions and airlines’ precautions to avoid thunderstorms by, say, 25 kilometres, it is often down to the captain to judge how long to keep the seatbelt sign lit. But frustrated passengers will probably ignore it if it’s left on for too long.
USA Today
[pictured: Wake Vortex Study; courtesy NASA]


Check Also

GetJet, airlines, Finnair, leasing, Lithuania, Vilnius, plane, aircraft, Boeing 737, flights, change, Helsinki, growth

Finnair to lease “emergency” plane from Lithuania

The Finnish flag carrier needs an extra plane to fly some of its European routes from early June until January.

Finnair, winners, business travel, class, award, Nordic, travel, business travel association, meeting, conference, Helsinki, Europcar, Clarion, First Card, HRG

Nordic Business Travel Award winners named

The first Nordic Business Travel Awards were staged at the Clarion Hotel in Helsinki last night.

Spain, UK, Swedes, Easter, travel, tourism, countries, domestic, Brexit

Where Swedes are heading for Easter

An online travel agency presents its top ten destinations for Swedes this year.

Small Planet Airlines, revenue, profit, 2017, markets, charter, leisure, airline, Germany, Poland, Asia, fleet

Small Planet battles to be Baltics’ biggest airline

The Lithuanian leisure carrier reports a dramatic financial turnaround and starts to grow its fleet.

Norway, cabin, Spain, outbound, travel, trends, Easter, family, tourism, Sweden

Norwegians: Spain this Easter, or the cabin?

Almost half of all Norwegians will take a holiday this Easter – but many of these holidaymakers will simply be heading to their cabins.

American Airlines, flights, USA, air travel, demand, flights, A4A, spring, 2018, record, passengers, airfares, cost, price

US airlines expect all-time-high spring

An additional 94,000 passengers every day are expected on US airlines; domestic fares including ancillary are 40% less than in 1980.