Singapore Airlines offers compensation to passengers on turbulent flight

Singapore Airlines has offered compensation to passengers who experienced extreme turbulence on a flight last month, resulting in the death of one passenger and injuries to many others.

The Boeing 777 jet, which was carrying 211 passengers and 18 crew members from London to Singapore, encountered sudden turbulence over the Irrawaddy basin on May 20, causing people and items to be thrown around the cabin. The plane was forced to divert to Thailand.

A 73-year-old British man tragically died of a suspected heart attack, and dozens of passengers were hospitalised with injuries ranging from spinal, brain and bone damage to organ damage. Nineteen people are still in hospital in Bangkok. Singapore Airlines has offered $10,000 in compensation to passengers with minor injuries.

“For those who sustained more serious injuries from the incident, we have invited them to discuss a compensation offer to meet each of their specific circumstances when they feel well and ready to do so,” the airline said in a statement. Those who have been medically assessed as having sustained serious injuries and require long-term medical care will receive an advance payment of $25,000 for their immediate needs.

“This will be part of the final compensation that these passengers will receive,” the airline added. The airline said it will also provide full air fare refunds to all passengers on the flight, including those without any injuries. All passengers will also receive delay compensation in accordance with European Union or U.K. regulations, it said.

The airline added that it had already given all passengers 1,000 Singapore dollars ($739) each for their immediate needs, covered medical expenses of injured passengers, and arranged for their family members and loved ones to fly up to Bangkok where requested.

Singapore’s Transport Ministry has begun a preliminary investigation into the incident. The Ministry said that the plane went through huge swings in g-force in less than five seconds, likely causing the injuries to people who weren’t buckled into their seats. It said the jet dropped 178 feet (54 meters) in less than one second, which “likely resulted in the occupants who were not belted up to become airborne” before falling back down.

Officials said the turbulence was believed to have struck when meals were being served and many people were not using seat belts. Passengers have described the ” sheer terror ” of the aircraft shuddering, loose items flying and injured people lying paralyzed on the floor of the plane.

The airline said that it is working to help all of the passengers affected by the incident and providing them with support. The cause of the turbulence remains uncertain. While many associate turbulence with severe storms, the most perilous type is known as clear air turbulence. This can occur in thin cirrus clouds or even in clear air near thunderstorms, as temperature and pressure differences generate strong currents of rapid-moving air.

A 2021 report by the US National Transportation Safety Board revealed that turbulence was responsible for 37.6% of all accidents on larger commercial airlines from 2009 to 2018. The Federal Aviation Administration reported 146 serious injuries due to turbulence from 2009 to 2021.

Article source: https://airlines.einnews.com/article/719022170/l8gjyzcsk-8vGB_h?ref=rss&ecode=vaZAu9rk30b8KC5H

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