HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow/Gray News) - An Air Canada flight was forced to divert to Honolulu on Thursday morning due to “severe clear air” turbulence that injured dozens of people, officials said.
Officials said at least 35 people suffered minor injuries, and nine of those individuals were being transported to area hospitals.
Air Canada flight 33 — from Vancouver to Sydney — was about two hours past Hawaii when it experienced “un-forecasted” and “sudden” turbulence, forcing it to divert to Honolulu, according to Air Canada officials.
The plane landed at the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport around 6:45 a.m. Hawaii time (12:45 p.m. EDT), the airport duty manager said.
Officials said at least 35 people suffered minor injuries, and nine of those individuals were being transported to area hospitals. It’s not clear what their conditions are at this time.
Michael Bailey, a passenger on board the plane, said there was a lot of screaming and panic when it all happened.
“All of a sudden, the plane dropped,” Bailey said. “Must’ve dropped about 100 feet or something because we all went up to the ceiling like throughout the plane. It was pretty scary."
He added, “The seat in front of me, the girl hit the plastic overhead and actually snapped and broke it, and the oxygen masks came down, and a lot of panic."
There were nearly 270 passengers and 15 crew members on board. Air Canada is making arrangements for passengers.
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