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One Dead, 71 Injured as London-Singapore Flight Hits Severe Turbulence

by Felicia Awoyemi
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One person died and more than 70 were injured Tuesday when a Singapore Airlines flight from London hit severe turbulence and was forced to make an emergency landing in Bangkok.


Flight tracking data suggested the plane dropped more than 1,800 metres (6,000 feet) in just five minutes, causing multiple head injuries to those on board.


It is the latest drama involving a Boeing plane, after a fuselage panel blew out of an Alaska Airlines 737 MAX in January as well as two fatal crashes in 2018 and 2019.


Singapore Airlines said flight SQ321 took off from London’s Heathrow airport and “encountered sudden extreme turbulence” at 11,300 metres (37,000 feet) over Myanmar’s Irrawaddy Basin.


“We can confirm that there are injuries and one fatality on board the Boeing 777-300ER. There were a total of 211 passengers and 18 crew on board,” the airline said in a statement.


Kittipong Kittikachorn, the director of Suvarnabhumi Airport, said the passenger who died was a 73-year-old British man.


Most of the injuries were caused by blows to the head, Kittipong said.


Bangkok’s Samitivej Srinakarin Hospital said a total of 71 people had been sent for treatment, six of them severely injured.

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