Some 30 passengers were hurt when an American Airlines flight from Miami, Florida, USA, to Trinidad experienced severe turbulence. Only one passenger was warded at hospital with head and back injuries, while the others were treated for minor injuries and sent home.
There was panic among passengers as the plane ran into turbulence an hour before arriving at Piarco. However, the aircraft landed safely.
An emergency was declared aboard the AA flight around 9 pm on Wednesday with the pilot making contact with Air Traffic Control at Piarco International Airport to advise that medical assistance was needed when the plane arrived.
The Airports Authority contacted medical facilities at the Arima Health facility, a few miles from the airport to mobilize medical staff to expect injured passengers, while para-medics rushed to the scene to render treatment.
According to the Ministry of Health the majority of passengers received minor injuries and were treated at the airport. Other passengers were treated at public health clinics.
According to the Airport Authority, the AA aircraft had experienced severe turbulence while en route from Miami to Piarco.
One passenger took to social media to explain her harrowing experience saying the aircraft took a sudden dive and many passengers were not buckled to their seats.
She said panic ensued as some passengers, including a baby, were tossed about, before hitting the ceiling. The “fasten seat belt” light came on and passengers were given a warning to prepare for a bumpy ride.