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Flight hits turbulence, makes emergency landing in Kentucky


LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - A flight attendant and a passenger were
injured aboard a Northwest Airlines plane when it hit turbulence
during a flight from Knoxville, Tenn., to Detroit Tuesday, an
airline spokesman said.
Joe Williams, spokesman for Memphis, Tenn.-based Pinnacle
Airlines, which operated Flight 2871, said the regional jet took
off at 4:25 p.m. and encountered turbulence 35 miles southwest of
Louisville, Ky., at 30,000 feet. It was forced to land at
Louisville International Airport about an hour later. About 24
passengers were aboard the CRJ200, Williams said.
Williams said the flight attendant was taken to a hospital. He
didn't know the extent of the injuries, but described them as
minor.
Severe thunderstorms plagued Kentucky on Tuesday, causing
flooding and power outages.
Nathan Foster, meteorologist with the National Weather Service
in Louisville, said weather could have been a factor in the
turbulence.
"We've had severe weather throughout the entire area all the
way down to the Tennessee border off and on the entire day,"
Foster said.
On Monday, 26 passengers were injured when turbulence rattled
Continental Flight 128 over the Atlantic. The Boeing 767 was on its
way from Rio de Janeiro to Houston and made an emergency landing in
Miami. Four passengers were seriously injured when the jetliner
began to plunge and shake violently, hurling passengers over
seatbacks and slamming them against luggage bins.
Brian Wimer, a meteorologist from Accuweather, said there were
no thunderstorms in the area of the Continental flight and
speculated that the plane may have encountered clear air
turbulence, which can occur at high altitudes in tranquil and
cloudless conditions. The Federal Aviation Administration did not
have an official cause of the problem.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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