At least one passenger and a member of cabin crew were injured after an Air China flight from Shanghai to Beijing was struck by severe clear air turbulence on Monday.
Video footage taken by one terrified passenger on the Airbus A330 aircraft showed two passengers and a flight attendant being flung into the air after the plane suddenly dropped, literally lifting people off their feet.
As the victims and other cabin detritus fell back to the floor, damage to a ceiling panel and an emergency exit sign were clearly visible.
Air China flight CA1524 departed from Shanghai at around 3:25 pm on Monday, and passengers aboard the flight say the journey was mostly smooth until the last 40 minutes of the flight when there were two sudden and unexpected drops.
Photos shared on social media showed magazines, pillows and water bottles strewn across the cabin floor following the turbulence event.
A spokesperson for Air China confirmed that one passenger and one member of cabin crew was sent to the hospital after the aircraft landed safely in Beijing.
A spokesperson for the airline said it “will continue to prioritize safety and provide excellent services, and we appreciate the support and care from our valued passengers”.
Last month, at least one member of British Airways cabin crew had to undergo surgery after being seriously injured when a flight from Singapore to London was hit by severe turbulence as it flew over the Bay of Bengal.
Three crew members were injured, with one reportedly suffering a possible broken leg, another suffered a serious head injury, and the third reportedly suffered a broken femur.
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.