IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

Passengers hurt when plane hits turbulence

/ Source: The Associated Press

An Air Canada jetliner made an emergency landing in Calgary on Thursday after 10 people were injured when the plane violently plunged and rolled, tossing passengers around the cabin during a cross-country flight.

Air Canada did not immediately confirm the cause of the problem on the jet, which was carrying 88 people from Victoria, British Columbia, to Toronto.

Ten people were taken to a hospital, including six who are in stable condition, Stuart Brideaux of Calgary Emergency Medical Services said. Four others suffered minor injuries, he said.

Duncan Dee, an Air Canada vice president, said two crew and eight passengers were injured.

NavCanada, the civil aviation regulatory body. declined to comment on weather conditions along the route, although the agency's Web site indicated there were no aviation weather bulletins in effect at the time.

The rough flight was the second in Canada in recent months. In September, nine people were hurt and three sent to the hospital after a Halifax-bound WestJet flight hit turbulence with little warning.

Passengers on Thursday's flight described chaos.

"All of a sudden there were three big drops," passenger Andrew Evans said. "One major drop and then two more that went `Oomph! Oomph!' And the plane rolled a bit after that.

"I was in the very, very front seat of the plane and was watching dishes fly through the air," Evans said. "There was a crash. The cart tipped over and there was a lot of squealing.

"It was over and done with in 10 or 15 seconds," said Evans, who was on his way to Washington, D.C.

Passenger Jayne Harvey said the plane dropped sharply, then rolled left and right as the pilots fought to bring it under control.

The pilots came on the intercom "and said they were flying manually and that the computer had been knocked out," she said.

Dee said he cannot speculate on what the pilot said.

One female passenger who was not identified told media at the airport that when the plane hit the turbulence, her friend "flew up and hit the ceiling and went back down."