At least five people suffered serious injuries and many more were shaken up on Monday, February 17, when the Boeing 737 airplane in which they were flying experienced heavy turbulence during its descent to an airport in Billings, Montana.
The flight left from Denver, Colorado carrying 114 passengers and 5 crew members. It was flying over Montana airspace and had just started its descent to the airport in Billings around 1:30 PM when the turbulence began. The turbulence caused the plane to drop suddenly, throwing passengers into the air. Following the turbulence, the pilot was forced to declare a medical emergency on board the plane due to his passengers’ and crew members’ injuries.
According to witnesses, one of the people thrown into the air was an infant who was thrown into another seat in the plane. Witnesses stated that the baby appeared to avoid serious injury. Another passenger, an adult woman, was thrown into the air so severely that her head crashed through the ceiling above her, and several other people reported injuries from being throw into the air, including head, neck and back injuries. Upon landing, at least five of the injured passengers and crew were hospitalized for their injuries.
United Airlines, the company that owns the plane, released a statement following the incident stating that its flight safety team is investigating the incident.
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