Like the roads we drive on everyday, some days the skies can be a little bit bumpy. But a recent American Airlines flight experienced more than a few hiccups over the weekend, hitting such extreme turbulence that 10 people were hospitalized.
The flight was headed to Philadelphia from Athens, Greece, on Saturday and was about 30 minutes from landing, reports ABC 6. Flight attendants were finishing up beverage service when passengers say they heard an announcement instructing passengers to sit down and buckle up.
“And then they said for the flight attendants to get to their seats, and they didn’t even have time. It started shaking, then it took a big drop. Babies screaming, people in front of us hitting the ceiling,” one passenger told the news station.
Another traveler said there was slight turbulence for a few seconds, “then suddenly it felt like the whole plane was in free fall.”
Turbulence lasted for about 15 seconds, passengers said, enough time for drinks to go flying:
According to one traveler, a few minutes later, one crew member appeared and told passengers, “I’m the only flight attendant that is able to help everyone right now.”
The pilot apologized for the incident and told passengers that another plane had flown through and only reported moderated turbulence, one traveler told The Washington Post.
Paramedics were standing by when the plane landed. American said in a statement that all 10 people — seven crew members and three passengers — who were hospitalized were released by Sunday morning.
“American Airlines flight 759 from Athens, Greece to Philadelphia International Airport briefly encountered severe turbulence shortly before landing safely in Philadelphia,” the airline said in a statement. “The seat belt sign was on at the time. Three passengers and seven crew members were transported to a local hospital for evaluation. We are taking care of our passengers and our crew members at this time and want to thank our team members for keeping our passengers safe.”