Turbulence Leaves 2 Injured on American Airlines Flight to Dallas
Two passengers on an American Airlines flight from San Luis Potosi, Mexico (SLP) en route to Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) were taken to the hospital with not life threatening injuries after severe turbulence struck the aircraft, forcing it to divert to Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS).
American Airlines Flight 5781 departed from San Luis Potosi (SLP) at 2:25pm local time bound for American's hub in Dallas. The aircraft, a Bombardier CRJ-900 operated by American's regional affiliate Mesa Airlines, navigated around the strongest storms, resulting in a rather lengthy route. As the flight neared Dallas, it encountered turbulence. The turbulence was reportedly the result of the severe weather affecting the Dallas-Forth Worth area, forcing the aircraft to divert to AUS.
Of the 79 passengers and crew aboard the flight, one passenger and one flight attendant had injuries severe enough that they sought medical treatment at a local hospital. An American Airlines spokesperson noted that the injured passenger and crew member complained of neck and knee pain.
A local NBC affiliate reported that a third passenger was also injured on the flight, though they didn't seek medical treatment.
In a statement to KXAN, Bryce Dubee, public information specialist for City of Austin's Department of Aviation, said that diversions like this are common during severe weather. Dubee continued saying, "Safety is a top priority in these situations when there is severe weather. Airports will work together all the time to reroute flights to divert them to keep planes moving safely."
The uninjured passengers and crew were provided with lodging in the Austin area on Wednesday night. Passengers on AA5781 were put on flights to Dallas-Forth Worth International Airport the morning following the incident. Both passengers who received medical attention were released on Wednesday night, CNN reports.