5 flight attendants injured as airplane hits severe turbulence

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By Ray Sanchez

CNN

(CNN) — A United Airlines flight returned to Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey on Thursday after severe turbulence injured five flight attendants, authorities said.

The plane hit “severe turbulence” about 45 minutes into the Beijing-bound United Flight 89, said Ron Marsico, a spokesman for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which operates the airport.

“The aircraft landed safely in Newark with 189 passengers and 16 crew members on board,” said United spokeswoman Jennifer Dohm. “Five crew members sustained injuries. Our team in Newark is reviewing the event.”

The five flight attendants suffered what appeared to be minor injuries, though one complained of severe back pain, Marsico said. They were taken to local hospitals for evaluation.

“It happened in an instant,” said Bryan Munoz, 23, a freelance journalist in Chicago, who was sitting in business class. “It wasn’t that bad…It’s just that it happened so fast. The only people that were hurt were the crew members preparing to serve in the back of the plane.”

The Boeing 777-200 was scheduled to depart the airport about 1 p.m., according to flightaware.com.

Dohm said the airline will accommodate passengers on a flight on Friday morning and offered hotels in Newark for Thursday evening.

CNN’s Rande Iaboni, Kevin Conlon and Rob Frehse contributed to this report.

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4 comments

  • Ashley

    And this is why it is NOT safe to have lap babies. Why must our laptops be secured but babies under 2 aren’t required to have their own seats? The laws of physics don’t change just because you are tiny!

  • Ashley

    Just google lap baby’s killed or injured and it will show plenty. Not just for turbulence but for crash landings. Even just one baby killed by that means its too many!

    Even the FAA recommends babies have their own seat with their carseat. And yes its all about $$$ because fewer people with babies would travel. But I find it worth the extra $400+ to ensure my child’s safety or I just don’t fly.
    Not to mention, these babies who are lap babies, means they’re carseats are checked under the plane. I for one, have had suitcases lost and know many others who have had theirs damaged.
    Why would you trust a carseat that is a life saving device to save your child’s life when you don’t know how it was treated out of your sight.
    I recommend googling how to safely fly with babies/toddlers and carseats.Just because it’s allowed for babies under 2 to be lap babies, doesn’t mean its safe.

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