Dozens injured as turbulence forces Air Canada flight to divert to Honolulu
11 Jul 2019, 23:26 ( 9 days ago)
An Air Canada flight Thursday morning was forced to divert to Honolulu, capital of U.S. Hawaii, after suffering turbulence, local media reported, adding that dozens of people were injured in the incident.
According to Air Canada spokesman Peter Fitzpatrick, the Boeing 777-200 was carrying 269 passengers and 15 crew members, flying from Vancouver to Sydney. The local Hawaii News Now website reported the plane landed at the Honolulu's airport around 6:45 a.m. local time.
The plane had flown past Hawaii for two hours when it reported experiencing "un-forecasted" and "sudden" turbulence, then diverted back to Honolulu.
The turbulence happened at 36,000 feet (10,973 meters) about 600 miles (966 kilometers) southwest of Honolulu, said U.S. Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Ian Gregor.
Gregor said crewmembers asked for medical personnel to meet the plane at the gate.
Officials said at least 35 people suffered minor injuries, and nine of those individuals were being transported to the hospital after the plane landed.
Many of them received head and neck injuries, according to local media reports. Such injuries indicate that the passengers were basically flung out of their seats when the aircraft hit the "bumpy" spot above the Pacific.
Air Canada was arranging hotel accommodations and meals in Honolulu and options for resuming the flight, said Air Canada spokeswoman Angela Mah.