Eight passengers and 14 crewmembers of Singapore Airlines (SA) flight SQ-424 were injured after the aircraft experienced sudden turbulence during landing at Mumbai international airport on Saturday evening.
The flight, with 408 passengers and 25 crewmembers on-board from Singapore, was scheduled to land at T2 at around 9.55 pm on Saturday. After the aircraft landed, the airport doctors and paramedics on duty rushed to attend to the injured.
Nirmalaben Makwana sustained injuries to her shoulder and stomach when the aircraft experienced sudden turbulence before landing
The passengers were shifted to Seven Hills Hospital in Andheri (East), while the airlines admitted 10 of their employees at Hiranandani Hospital in Powai. On Sunday, six of the eight passengers were discharged after their minor injuries were attended to. All the crewmembers were discharged as well.
Recounting the incident, Nanu Bhai Makwana, the husband of one of the injured passengers, Nirmalaben Makwana, told mid-day, “We couldn’t really understand what went wrong with the aircraft all of a sudden.
She hit her shoulder on the ceiling and sustained injuries on her shoulder and stomach. My daughter and I were awake at the time. We had gone to Singapore to see my newly born granddaughter. We are from Gujarat and we were going to take a bus from Borivli at around midnight.
While the airline is paying for the treatment, we are quite upset after the incident. We did not want to end such a joyous trip in this manner. Diwali is in a few days and I don’t think my wife will get better by then.”
Navill, son of another injured passenger, Turel Viraf, said his father sustained chest injuries but was doing better. “Doctors have assured us that he will be discharged soon,” said the Dadar resident.
Speaking to mid-day, Dr Bhuvan Dumeti, assistant general manager and spokesperson of Seven Hills Hospital, said, “Both the patients are stable. While Turel has some minor chest injuries, Nirmalaben has shoulder injuries and has hurt her abdomen. By tomorrow evening (Monday), the doctors will take a call when they can be discharged.”
The spokesperson of Singapore Airlines told this paper, “Singapore Airlines flight SQ 424 from Singapore to Mumbai experienced sudden turbulence during descent on October 18. Eight passengers and 14 crewmembers sustained injuries and were attended to by medical personnel on arrival at Mumbai airport. Our immediate concern is for the well-being of our passengers and crew. SA will provide full assistance to concerned authorities for them to conduct their investigations.”
Vipul Saxena, an aviation expert, explained, “During summers or high-temperature days, the area around 100 feet close to the ground experiences heavy turbulence and causes instability to aircraft approaching descent. In such a situation, passengers not wearing a seatbelt or with loose seatbelts can suffer severe jerks, causing injuries if they hit the seat in front or the roof. Mumbai has been experiencing unusually high temperatures for the last one week, which may have caused the incident. The cabin crew should be more attentive and caution passengers about it.”
Hoang Thi Huyenthy
Khan Shamim Khursgid
Singadia Dharmendra Dinesh