A British grandad who died following a heart attack after severe turbulence onboard a Singapore Airlines flight has been named.

Geoffrey Ralph Kitchen, 73, is believed to have had a heart attack after the plane suddenly pitched down to 31,000 ft over the span of about three minutes.

The plane, bound for Singapore, had to make an emergency landing at Suvarnabhumi International Airport in Bangkok, Thailand.

Police have since confirmed that British pensioner Mr Kitchen was killed on the Singapore Airlines flight today. The pensioner, from Thornbury, is believed to have been hurled from side-to-side and suffered a heart attack when the Boeing 777 was struck by treacherous conditions.

Geoffrey, who ran a musical theatre group, died onboard flight SQ321 before it made an emergency landing.

Mr Kitchen, who was retired, has been moved to a police hospital for a post-mortem examination. His wife, who was also injured in the horror turbulence, is being treated at the hospital.

Airport Director Kittipong Kittikachorn confirmed the name and details of the man who had died. He was also named in a police report into the incident.

The flight was carrying a total of 211 passengers and 18 crew, the airline confirmed in a statement.

“Singapore Airlines offers its deepest condolences to the family of the deceased”, it said. The airline is working with Thai authorities to provide medical assistance to those injured, with ambulances and emergency teams dispatched to Suvarnbhumi Airport.

In an update published on social media on Tuesday afternoon, Singapore Airlines said: “The nationalities of the passengers are as follows: 56 from Australia, two from Canada, one from Germany, three from India, two from Indonesia, one from Iceland, four from Ireland, one from Israel, 16 from Malaysia, two from Myanmar, 23 from New Zealand, five from the Philippines, 41 from Singapore, one from South Korea, two from Spain, 47 from the United Kingdom, and four from the United States of America.”

Flightradar24 said its tracking data showed the plane encountering turbulence at approximately 8.49am BST while flying over Myanmar. The flight tracking service said data sent from the aircraft showed a “rapid change in vertical rate, consistent with a sudden turbulence event”, adding that there were “some severe” thunderstorms in the area at the time.

A passenger from London, who gave his name as Andrew, told BBC Radio 5 Live the seat belt sign came on, he followed the instruction, and “at that very moment, the plane suddenly dropped”.

He said: “The thing I remember the most is seeing objects and things flying through the air. I was covered in coffee. It was incredibly severe turbulence.” He heard “awful screaming” as the plane was dropping, and what “sounded like a thud”.

Article source: https://airlines.einnews.com/article/713430463/XJvmKFkT2TLWjsYh?ref=rss&ecode=vaZAu9rk30b8KC5H

Leave a Reply