Monday, April 15, 2024

AirDrop: Terrifying Free-Fall on LATAM Flight Leaves Passengers Injured

HomeTop NewsAirDrop: Terrifying Free-Fall on LATAM Flight Leaves Passengers Injured

Santiago, Chile – Imagine being on a routine flight when suddenly your plane drops sharply from the sky in a terrifying freefall. That’s the frightening experience dozens of passengers endured on a LATAM Airlines flight from Australia to New Zealand on Monday.

Chilean aviation officials are rushing to investigate the mid-air incident onboard Flight LA800 from Sydney to Auckland. Teams on the ground in New Zealand have already removed the Boeing 787’s black box flight data recorders for analysis by Chilean experts.

Firsthand Accounts of Terror in the Sky

Several travelers have vividly described the shocking moment the plane abruptly plunged hundreds of feet, causing chaos and injuries in the cabin. Passenger Brian Jokat was jolted awake as the aircraft dropped nearly 500 feet in an instant.

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“Some passengers were stuck to the roof before falling back down,” Jokat recounted to CNN. “It was like being on a roller coaster, but far more frightening.”

After the plane landed safely in Auckland, the pilot informed passengers that a instrument failure caused him to temporarily lose control of the jet. “My gauges just went blank on me,” Jokat recalled the pilot explaining.

LATAM Airlines confirmed a “technical event” occurred but did not provide further details. However, the airline said affected passengers and crew “received immediate medical assistance” upon landing.

Dozens Hurt in Mid-Air Plummet

While LATAM has not released the number injured, it’s clear the shocking plunge resulted in multiple casualties. Emergency responders in Auckland treated around 50 people after the plane landed, including one person in serious condition. A dozen others had to be transported to hospitals.

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“It was horrible – people were flying, things were flying through the cabin,” recounted Chilean passenger Verónica Martínez after returning home to Santiago on Tuesday. She saw a baby get thrown about the lurching cabin but was spared injury herself by wearing a seatbelt.

Another Chilean traveler, Diego Valenzuela, described the abrupt freefall as lasting “3, 4 seconds” before the plane pulled up. Both Martínez and Valenzuela expressed relief at being back on solid ground after their aerial ordeal.

Boeing’s Latest Incident

The mid-air plunge is yet another safety incident plaguing troubled aircraft maker Boeing, which has spent years grappling with quality control and safety issues across its commercial airplane models.

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Teams of investigators from Chile’s civil aviation authorities are already en route to New Zealand. They will analyze the flight data recorders, with assistance from New Zealand air safety personnel, to determine the cause of the terrifying high-altitude incident.

As the probe ramps up, all eyes will be on Boeing and LATAM to explain why an instrument failure could lead to a pilot temporarily losing control and putting passengers at such risk high above the Pacific. Flyers worldwide will be watching closely for answers.

Mezhar Alee
Mezhar Alee
Mezhar Alee is a prolific author who provides commentary and analysis on business, finance, politics, sports, and current events on his website Opportuneist. With over a decade of experience in journalism and blogging, Mezhar aims to deliver well-researched insights and thought-provoking perspectives on important local and global issues in society.

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