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UPDATE 9:42am: A video of the aftermath shortly after the turbulence has surfaced. In it, you can hear the flight attendants asking for any medical personnel to identify themselves. Warning: this video shows one passenger lying in the aisle in distress, with blood stains on the overhead bins. Viewer discretion advised.
Reports are coming out of Bangkok this morning of a terrifying situation on board Aeroflot Flight 270 from Moscow (SVO) to Bangkok (BKK). About an hour before landing, the Aeroflot Boeing 777-300ER operating the flight hit an area of severe turbulence, leaving dozens injured — some critically.
The Daily Mail reports that the turbulence was strong enough that “babies were thrown out of their mothers’ arms by the force of the severe turbulence.”
Evgenia Zibrova — a Moscow-based passenger on the flight — posted the following explanation on her now-private Instagram account:
Numerous air pockets one hour before landing led to broken bones, internal and external bleeding. Lots of people from the tail cabin have broken their noses, several people have probably broken their spines. Babies are covered in bruises, people lost consciousness. Thanks that we are still alive. Aeroflot, please help these people.
According to Airlive.net, the Russian consulate in Thailand confirms “passengers got fractures, bruises and sprains, they are in hospital now.” He added that the injured passengers “who were injured did not have their seat belts fastened.”
The number of injuries varies from source to source. According to Airlive, 19 people were hospitalized with two requiring surgery. The Daily Mail is reporting 27 injuries, including “suspected broken spines.” The Sun reports at least 20 injured, including three babies.
From photos and videos emerging from the flight, it seems that the turbulence was strong enough to deploy some oxygen masks. One passenger is shown on the plane with splints on both arms. Another photo shows blood smeared on the overhead bins.
One video posted to YouTube shows the aftermath of the plane once on the ground. While the plane is mostly empty by this point, medical personnel are tending to an injured passenger lying in an aisle. Further into the video, you can see the disaster in the galley (while there is nothing graphic in the video, it does show an injured passenger):
The flight landed this morning at 7:38am local time, 8:38pm (April 30) ET. The plane (registration VP-BGD) seems to have not been significantly damaged in the incident, as it’s currently operating the return flight: Aeroflot Flight 271 from Bangkok (BKK) back to Moscow (SVO).
Our thoughts go out to the injured passengers; we wish them a speedy recovery. Hopefully this will serve as a stark reminder to all passengers to keep your seat belt fastened at all times — even when the sign is off.
Featured image courtesy of Getty Images.
UDPATE: The original version of this article linked to a Russian-language news report that seems to be using stock video footage from another incident. It has been removed as the video doesn’t add clarity to this Aeroflot situation.
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