Six American Airlines aircrew based in New York have been seriously injured in a horror smash on a six-lane expressway in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh.
The accident happened while the group were travelling together as part of an organised tour in a small bus as part of a layover excursion to visit the world-famous Taj Mahal.
The injured aircrew included two pilots and four flight attendants. All are believed to be U.S. citizens. Two of the injured are said to have been transported to the hospital in critical condition following the horrific accident on January 9.
The ages of the victims range from just 22 years old to 60 years old, according to local media reports. At the request of the victim’s families, personal details and graphic images of the accident have not been shared.
Three of the victims have been able to travel back to the United States, while three remain too unwell to yet be transported home and are still being treated in hospital in India.
The accident reportedly occurred after thick fog descended on the Yamuna Expressway on Monday. The bus that the group were being driven in collided with a container due to poor visibility causing extensive damage to the front of the vehicle.
The bus driver also required hospital treatment as a result of injuries he sustained in the accident.
The Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA) said a Critical Incident Response Team was deployed to India soon after the incident, and work is ongoing to repatriate the injured crew back to the United States at the earliest opportunity.
American Airlines did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The Dallas Fort Worth-based carrier resumed flights between New York and Delhi in November 2021 following a more than 10-year absence. Day trips between Delhi and the Taj Mahal are a popular excursion for foreign aircrews, but the drive can take more than three and a half hours in a single direction.
Mateusz Maszczynski honed his skills as an international flight attendant at the most prominent airline in the Middle East and has been flying throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for a well-known European airline. Matt is passionate about the aviation industry and has become an expert in passenger experience and human-centric stories. Always keeping an ear close to the ground, Matt's industry insights, analysis and news coverage is frequently relied upon by some of the biggest names in journalism.