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Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Thu Jul 04, 2002 4:49 pm

What is your worst/best experience with bad weather or turbulence?
How has it been inside the plane?
I've had 12 years ago thunderstorm action above Rome in a Finnair DC-9...
People were actually screaming and the a/c was bouncing and shaking pretty badly...  Sad
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Thu Jul 04, 2002 5:10 pm

An air pocket over South China Sea en route from Singapore to Hongkong on board a CAL 747-200 in Nov 1982. It sent the a/c diving and all those without their seatbelts were thrown to the ceiling. I distinctively remembered a patch of orange juice on the ceiling before the act of gravity let it splash on to pax beneath when we stabilised.

Magazines, shoes, cups (lots of it), peanut wrappers, peanuts... people, all stuck to the ceiling like they belonged up there... very surreal. There were no serious injuries except for an FA who broke her ankle when she fell from the ceiling.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Thu Jul 04, 2002 5:40 pm

My worst was on a Hawaiian Airlines DC-10 from HNL-LAX. We hit some minor turbulence for the first hour or so, then all of a sudden out of nowhere we hit some type of air pocket or something and we dropped like a rock. I swear I thought the wings were going to snap (I had never seen a wing flex that much).

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Thu Jul 04, 2002 5:52 pm

I've flown an awful lot on business and have gone through all sorts of incidents, but the worst was on a Swissair A320 from Geneva to Moscow a couple of years ago. The turbulence was so severe it sounded and felt like someone was crashing a truck into the side of the plane every few seconds. The passengers in the economy section (not-so-frequent travelers, I expect) were screaming their heads off. In business class, passengers were relatively silent, but white-knuckled all the way. No injuries, luckily, as we were warned in advance by the pilot that things were going to get bumpy, the seatbelt sign was on and all flight attendants and food carts were secured.

Unlike an Eastern Airlines L1011 I flew many years ago - I think it was from Houston to NYC. We hit some air pockets without warning, and I watched a man trying to walk down the aisle slam into the ceiling and then smacking the floor. He and a few others were taken off on stretchers after we landed.

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Thu Jul 04, 2002 6:05 pm

I remember a few years back in a Futura charter aircraft 737-400, we were climbing after taking off from Palma enroute to Dublin and all of a sudden we hit an air pocket and the plane nose dived for about ten seconds. They were the longest ten seconds in my life. Everybody was screaming. It was rough all the way back, but not as bad as the first air pocket.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Thu Jul 04, 2002 6:11 pm

Wings are pretty durable. For example, the wing on the 777 can withstand forces higher than those equivelant to the plane falling from cruising altitude, straight down. (not a dive)

Not sure what the DC-10 can withstand but I'd guess it's quite a bit more than what you experienced, Adam.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Thu Jul 04, 2002 6:13 pm

I was on my way from HNL to GUM on May 10, 2002 when, upon ascent we had to navigate our way through some kind of storm system. For an hour and a half, we were in this development and were slammed with heavy turbulence. Very similar to what "Cfalk" experienced when he said it felt like a truck slamming into the a/c every few seconds. I was up in BusinessFirst, so it made the experience all more intersting as we were already well into the meal service. The flight attendants stopped the service only once, as they were ordered to return to their seats by the captain. After that though, they resumed the service while the plane was still being slammed around. My flight attendants earned my respect as they never spilled anything on the passengers and did a FANTASTIC job. Definately an experience I'll never forget.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Thu Jul 04, 2002 7:14 pm

Interesting stories...airpockets are not visible in any radars huh?!? Clear air turbulence is all i have experienced all of a sudden and sure wouldn't like to be aboard when these events happen...
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Thu Jul 04, 2002 10:06 pm

I was flying from Chichen Itza to Playa del Carmen on an Aero Ferinco Let 410. We were over the jungle on the way back and ventured into some pretty dark storm clouds. The plane dropped like a rock and pitch up as it rolled sideways. People on board were screaming and a little German girl was throwing up. Anyways it couldn't have been that bad because the two Mexican pilots keep turning around and giving us thumbs up  Smile.


RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Thu Jul 04, 2002 10:53 pm

On a flight from SAT to MCI on Midwest Express, we hit an ice storm over Okalhoma. On the ground, over fifty cars were involved in one accident. Up in the air, we were bouncing around like a basketball. Up and down we went and that is no lie. The flight attendants were just getting ready to serve the meal when the pilot told them to cancel meal service for a while. The DC-9-30 aircraft we were on, luckily, held together.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Thu Jul 04, 2002 11:03 pm

The worst turbulence I had, during 5 (yes five) hours enroute from EZE (Buenos Aires) to MIA, doesn't compare to my parents' experience flying from Brazil to EZE.

It was a 767; in EZE air space, a hard storm prevailed, heavy turbulence, the cloudes ceiling was very low, the ILS was inoperative due to maintenance, and the pilot tried 3 times to land, without success. No doubt when the pilot descended from the clouds, once the runway in sight, the plane had a bad deviation from the runway. My parents told me they saw the runways lights only feet under the wings, and then the engines roaring, go around procedure, and pray!

After the third try, the plane was diverted back to Brazil. 6 hours later, the storm was over and they came back safely (thanks God!).

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Thu Jul 04, 2002 11:15 pm

Mine was this year aboard BMI Baby on decent into EMA....
BAPILOT2B will probably have his say on this because he was sat 5-6 seats infront of me because id moved to the back due to spare seats  Big thumbs up
We were coming down approaching clouds and out of no-where we went into this dark cloud, the plane shook violently as people screamed and the plane went into a sort of nose dive, my guess the pilot trying to get out of it....
Throughout this i took pics and as people screamed Jason (BAPILOT2B) turned and looked at me at the back and we both laughed  Laugh out loud
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Thu Jul 04, 2002 11:17 pm

Worst turbulence i ever experienced was on Kuwait airways JFK-LHR night flight. 1 hour into the flight over the Canadian east coast we encountered quite rough turbulence and our 777 started wobbling and shaking badly, loose objects welt flying all over the place, seatbelt sign came on. The expressions on my fellow fliers was quite amusing, but the turbulence was no match for the 777, i have every faith in it. Big grin

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 12:48 am

In february 1988 onboard Kar-Air Airbus A300B4 OH-LAA enroute from HEL to LPA, right over the Bay of Biscay we hit a stormcell or something and the pilot
kept excusing himself because ATC didn't allow him to take the aircraft to any other flightlevel because we had traffic above us and under...I'll never forget one lady sitting next to me, she was so drunk and confused of the turbulence that she tried to open the exitdoor! Well luckily that didn't work out so a flightattendant managed to calm her down.
It was 45 minutes of pure hell and screaming,I had an overwing windowseat and I'll never forget how the wings flexed! The aircraft is today with Air Scandic in the same colourscheme.

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 1:37 am

The worst turbulence I have ever experienced in flight was a long time ago, February, 1960. It occurred on an Eastern DC-7B, flying from IDL (can anyone guess where that is?) to DCA. We were flying at 8,000' if I remember correctly in a Nor'easter, so everyone had their seat belts fastened. This was well before the overhead compartments were enclosed. We drooooppped 4 times. The first time, I remember looking up and seeing a drink glass tumbling in midair with the fluid in little bubbles floating around it. Everything in the coat racks came out and was all over the cabin when we stopped going down. The second time, my stomach lost it and I used the "inflight discomfort bag". All I remember of the next 2 drops was that my stomach was cramped up in a hard knot and I was doubled up with my head again the seat back in front. During one of these, I was hit on the left knee with a used "inflight discomfort bag" (not mine). I also remember, during one of these drops, hearing the engines rev up, sort of like the sound dive bombers make in an old war movie. The flight was scheduled to continue on to Miami, but it was grounded at DCA for a heavy weather check. The airline handed out meal tickets to all the passengers; I don't know about the rest of the passengers, but eating was not my first priority at that time!!
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 3:11 am

Broke, I'd say IDL is none other than JFK in its previous incarnation as Idlewild.

And JFK is where I had my worst turbulence -- only that I thouroughly enjoyed it. We were descending through a very heavy thunderstorm in an Alitalia 747-200, flying Rome-JFK, March 2000. Everything had gone smoothly until we entered thick clouds and the plane started bumping and shaking, not too hard at first, then progressively harder until it became a true rodeo ride.

The captain told us that everything would be okay, but the lady next to me in the upper deck -- an unbearable snob covered with jewels who had behaved like a diva all the way from the Italy -- started sobbing and screaming "I don't want to die!". Really screaming. Really loud.

It got so bad that a flight attendant had to hold her and try to calm her. He told her that this was nothing and that he'd been in a far worse turbulence during a flight to Australia. It worked, and she calmed down a bit. I enjoyed the scene thoroughly, not least because I have blind faith in the structural solidity of a properly maintained 747.

But I'll admit that when we got up to deplane, after a LONG landing run on a very wet runway at JFK, my knees were a bit shaky. "Pretty bumpy, eh?" I said to the flight attendant who had calmed the hysterical lady, without ever losing an ounce of his professional, composed attitude. "I'll say so, sir -- he replied -- but you guys in the upper deck didn't have it so bad. At the back of the plane every single passenger was throwing up. A sea of vomit, if you allow me, sir. Have a nice stay in New York, and arrivederci."
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 4:02 am

First I have to say I am not a fan of turbulence at all.

I have three bad experiences with turbulence: the first one, back in 1982, on an Aeromexico DC-8 (don't know the series) from TIJ to MEX, we entered into a storm system somewhere along the route and it had to be pretty awful, because I was 5 at the time and I remember it vividly.

The second bad experience was in May 2001, on an AVIACSA 727 from MEX to MTY, and it involved clear air turbulence. We were cruising at 31,000 feet almost about to start descent. There were some clouds nearby but we weren't going through them and they were far enough and the flight had been smooth, but all of the sudden the plane hit an air pocket and we went up for about two seconds and then on a dive for about 7 seconds. As the seatbelt sign was not on, some people did hit themselves, and the flight attendants too. One of them actually started crying afterwards (I was on the last row of the plane so I saw her, as she had hit herself very hard on an ankle) Some trays which were being picked up flew all over as well as drinks.

The third one was about two months later on the same route but this time on a Mexicana F100 at night. We had started our cruise and the pilot came on and said we were in for a smooth flight. . .as he was saying this the bumps started and were pretty bad (clear air turbulence again). To make matters worse, as we were starting descent we entered into a really nasty storm front that was there all the way to landing, and the plane just bumped up and dived down, went sideways and there was a moment when I lost all vertical sense. Funny though, the actual landing was smooth as silk.

Anyway, ever since these two last incidents, I get very nervous every time I fly, specially when there is rough weather around. I'm still trying to overcome this "new" fear, and I'm doing better now because I realize the chances for any aircraft to have a real problem due to turbulence are minimal, even if it is severe.

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 4:11 am

My worst was in June 2001 on Singapore Airlines SQ 012 from SIN-NRT. The seatbelt sign was switched off and we were about 50 minutes out of NRT. The FAs were clearing the last trays from the second meal service when we hit slight turbulence. Then all of a sudden the plane was pushed up, then as if someone had just dropped us the plane fell with pax screaming all over the cabin. The plane then went back up and fell further and further down. At this point I had seen an FA get slammed into a lav door, a meal cart roll uncntrolled down the aisle, and saw overhead bins open with stuff faling from it. The captain then came on and apologized profusely and asked the crew to take their seats. The leading stewardess limped to her seat right infornt of me and was clearly in agony. Her ankle was severely bruised by the looks of it. Once the capt declared it safe for the crew to get up she was limping around the cabin picking up stuff and helping pax. The help of doctors was requested over the PA. Upon landing she along with several other pax were strecherd off.

Another time was landing in Kai Tak with a CX L101. The captain had aborted the first landing attempt due to a "technical difficulty". The plane was shaking vigorusly as we kept circling in rain clouds and the aircraft's movement was defiently not as smooth as normal. Upon making a very very very hard landing with the oxygen masks coming down, this lady, who had been acting like a total snob for the flight from Manila puked all over her Luis Vuitton leather boots. NICE!

-ps- that snob on the CX flight was in her late fifties and was wearing high heel leather boots with tight leather pants and wearing a reaveling leather vest. That on top of her gaudy jewelry and tons and tons of makeup...the puke served her right!
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 5:56 am

The worst I ever experienced was on a Thai 747-200 from Bangkok to Delhi. Several of the overhead compartments came open and several pax were very sick. Was glad when we got over it!
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 6:41 am

sorry for getting off topic but I have a question... When you drop, is it like dropping on a roller coaster only instead of 3 or 4 seconds it lasts for 10+ seconds? If so...does anyone ever pass out from the forces? (ex: would the pax on the Alaska MD80 that dove from about 18000 ft have passed out before the plane hit the ground?) thx
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 8:10 am

The feeling u get when the plane drops a few feet is a bit like a rollercoaster, but a more accurate description of it would be like when a car reaches a steep road and then it rolls down again and u get that weird feeling in your stomach.

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 8:28 am

Well.... I think that, most turbulence in a heavy isn't that severe, simply because they just don't get effected by weather as much as props flying through the same clouds..

I've had some bad experiences on 747's (QF in 2000, where we spent most of a 9 hour flight skimming t-storm clouds, and encountered so much turbulence, especially when it catches you by surprise!). But the worst was on a KLM Fokker 50. I've flown the route so many times, I just get used to it. The north sea is always quite choppy, but a couple of years back we had the remains of (can't remember what hurricane, but it was a biggy) over us, and descent into AMS was frightening... It was so violent, the way the a/c got thrown around, we could be banking right by 5 degrees, and then suddenly thrown over to the same on the left in less than a second. Alot of the time, we could just feel the plane literally being lifted up (like it was being pushed physically) and then dropped down again.

Must have been hell for the pilots, the woman next to me was, well, she didn't have her eyes open for a good 30 minutes. But I enjoyed it so much, I love turbulence! ok... maybe a couple of times I gripped the armrest  Smile.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 8:38 am

Admit it Dan, it scared the crap outta you! Big grin

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 8:59 am

MSP to LAX on NW. It began about 30 minutes prior to landing and continued until we touched down. No air pockets or anything--just very, very bumpy all the way in, with your body straining against the seatbelt. I used to enjoy a little turbulence now and then but that experience changed my mind to where now, I get sick in my stomach every time it starts bouncing.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 10:50 am

My turbulence wasn't so terrible...but was quite frightening. The problem is that it lasted FIVE hours...I was flying from Santiago to Miami in American(767-300)...it was alright until we flew over Lima(from SCL to LIM takes 3 hours...from LIM to MIA 5 hours)...and the plane began bouncing...even 1 hour before lannding at MIA, during the breakfast I was trying my juice not to split my knees...it was so unpleasant. And finally we landed at MIA...and everything finished well.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 11:25 am

My worst turbulence was just about 4 weeks ago actually. It is nothing compared to some of your air pocket stories, but I'll still tell you. The flight was on a Delta 777 from CDG to ATL. The flight had been smooth until the last five to ten mintues of our final approach. The plane would dive and then it would get really really bumpy and then dive again, etc., etc. When the plane dove, I would come out of my seat a little bit. The bumping was really violent. No one was screaming though. I took this trip as a school trip in the summer with my school and another one in my area. One of the people in our group started getting airsick. He couldn't find an airsickness bag. I guess the plane hadn't been stocked well in CDG. I collect them though and had about three in my carryon. None of them were from his seat though. Anyway, he started asking where there was an airsickness bag in sort of a desperate way. I willingly got him one from my carry on. Fortunately he was able to make it to the ground with no barfing and didn't throw up there either. The landing was really hard too. This 777 was one of the reconfigured ones with Delta with the 3-3-3 layout instead of the 2-5-2. This one may have come that way though because it was the newest one, N867DL, or otherwise known as ship 7008. I had an aisle on the right side of the middle, so I couldn't see out the window. I didn't know we were so close to landing and then suddenly the plane smashes down on the runway and we finished landing. I loved the turbulence and the landing though. It's a lot of fun to me.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 11:32 am

"ps- that snob on the CX flight was in her late fifties and was wearing high heel leather boots with tight leather pants and wearing a reaveling leather vest. That on top of her gaudy jewelry and tons and tons of makeup...the puke served her right"

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 11:33 am

Taking off into a T-storm outta JFK. AA flight 44 bound for Paris (ORY). It was so bad i pulled out the barf bag and tucked it under my leg and i never feel queasy on planes. Thankfully i didnt have to use it.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 11:59 am

My worst would be an an AmWest flight from EWR-PHX.

Moderate chop it is called......so to you it is not so bad. However, one flight attendant was knocked unconcious thanks to a sever jolt.

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 12:03 pm

During Descent into ATL on January 26, 2002... We were just about to touch down, and BAM, Our plane went down and swerved left and right, up and down. We had entered a Company DC-9's Wake Turbulence, and it sent us Up, and Down, Side to side. It was my worst, and best turbulence experience.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 12:15 pm

A few years ago on a DL 762 from PBI-LGA.

There were severe t-storms all up and down the East coast, and we could see lightning in the distance. Takeoff was smooth, and the flight up until about 1.5 hours out of NYC was uneventful. Then, the captain put on the seatbelt sign and literally 30 seconds later, we dropped a lot. We kept doing this. I'm not sure how long we were dropping, but people were crying and hugging each other all throughout the plane. During this, the engines were spooled up to what seemed like full power as we tried to regain some calmer altitude. The captain also profusely apoligized, and we arrived at LGA to a cascade of applause.

On the flip side of this story, on a DL 727 from DEN-LGA, we decended into a t-storm outside of NY. This time, there was no screaming, but the captain took us for a good ride. It was actually quite fun, because you could tell by the color of the clouds outside when we would hit the big drops. People were laughing. You could actually hear the wind outside the a/c as on landing (or maybe those were the thrust reversers...just kidding) Turns out, we had to divert to BWI and drive home.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 12:24 pm

For me, it was not the intensity which was bad, but the duration. AirNZ, SYD-LAX, January 2, 2000 (after the marvelous New Year's celebration in Victoria Square, Adelaide and an Ansett connecting flight), and the moderate turbulence began abou 1.5 hours out from SYD, not to abate (despite the pilots' diligent efforts to find alternate altitudes) for twelve hours.

It was bad enough that one could not take a drink of coffee without wearing it. Worst of all, it effectively precluded sleep of any kind, and by the time we arrived at LAX, everyone on board was exhausted.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 1:19 pm

My WORST flight experience was that I flew on Canadian DC10-30 on the way from HNL to YVR. This plane was shaking allllll the time not because of turbulence but because it's just shaking on the way to Vancouver. That was why I could not sleep probably.

I HATE TURBULENCE...that's make me really scary....
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 2:36 pm

My worst was last October on a flight from San Francisco to Denver. I was listening to channel nine and the tower was warning incomming planes of some kind of wind at the edge of the runway. It was the kind of wind that was like a sideways tornado(sorry, I don't remember what they called it). Anyways, we were comming in for landing and all of the sudden it felt like the plane had just been pulled down out of the sky by a monster or something. The pilot quickly reved the engines and we were on our way back up. It was fun for me, not for the guy sitting next to me.

The other instance was just last week on another United flight. This one was from Melbourne to Sydney. We were about half way through the flight when the plane just dropped. Several people were gasping throught the cabin. The guy next to me had never flown and he was gripping the armrests like I've never seen before. The pilot put on the Speed brakes to make a quick descent out of the rough weather. On the way to Australia was rough at the begining of June almost the whole way. Flight attendants had some real problems serving up the meals on that flight.

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 8:57 pm

Another bad experience was landing at Loiusville with a UA B737. The plane descended through a storm and was shaking violently. People werent that scared though there were some gasps people were still chatting lightly around the cabin. On our second lanidng attempt however, all of a sudden lighting struck the plane and the lights went off (they came back after 5 minutes). That was when the really odd uncomfortable silence until landing. When I looked up the aisle I saw people holding hands across the aisle. Reminded me about that scene in the movie Fearless...didnt calm me...

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Fri Jul 05, 2002 10:28 pm

If you want fun turbulence then fly into the remains of a force 8 typhoon like I did ast HKG! It was bad turbulence but the plane moved differently than anything i have ever felt. For most of the descent the plane was yawing from side to side, not banking though. It was great fun!
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 1:52 am

These are all fascinating stories. Here's mine: A UA flight from Portland, Oregon transcon to IAD, August 1996. A new A320, and the flight was uneventful until the approach at Dulles. We were arriving at around 5:00 p.m. on a late summer afternoon (can you say "T-storms"?). I could tell from looking out of my window seat, and listening the Channel 9, that the aproach and landing would be interesting.

At FL 10,000, the captain asked the FAs to secure everything and sit down. On the Channel 9 ATC audio, I heard a "NOTAM" annoucement that a "convective SIGMET" was reported 10 miles wnw of Dulles. That basically meant that a big t-storm with possible tornadic activity was likely. The descent was increasingly bumpy. We were to land on rw 12, but the winds were getting worse. On the ATC, the captain asked about conditions on the two n/s IAD runways. The reply for the approach runway, 1R: "winds 18, gusting to 35." (Can you say "windshear"?) The flight crew wisely decided to stick with RW 12.

As we descened, we hit many violent ups and downs. Some people were of course screaming. It seemed to me that grown men were the worse offenders! The carrying on the passengers was actually worse than the chop. The Captain and FO got us down to rw 12. We dropped out of the sky onto the RW like wet newspaper hitting a front porch. As we taxied, we had to stop as a lightning and very heavy rain pummeled the field. The bird was shaking in the wind gusts. We made it to the terminal a few minutes later.

All in all, in my opinion, is the weenie frightened passengers and the girly screaming that is the worst part of hitting heavy chop while at altitude or during an approach. I never have a concern about the bird or the flight crew.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 1:53 am

This past spring vacation, I was going to Atlanta, and not to long after takeoff from SNA, during our cruise, the plane just dropped. It dropped real hard and BOOM, felt like we hit ground in middair. Then we regained some altitude, and seconds later the same thing. We were litererally bouncing up and down, very far too. Some people started screaming, as there was a highschool class on the plane right in front of me. A few hilarious guys started throwing up there hands as if they were on a roller coaster, and started yelling "wooooo hoooo.." I have to admit, it was pretty scary turbulence. I have never felt the urge to grip the armrests..EVER..until then. Every few seconds, it would happen. People started to get really frightened, including the F/A, who came on the PA with a shakey voice, and told everyone, "y'all have to be real supportive now, just make sure the people next to you have their seatbelts fastened, y'all have to look after one 'nother now.." You could tell she herself was scared.

By the way, the seatbelt sign was off when this started. The sign went on with the usual *ping*, and the captain came on with a speal about thats why its so important to have your seatbelts on at all time.."thats why we tell you when your seated to have your seatbelts fastened...its a VERY important announcement.." The the remainder of the next hour or so was occasional chop. I was so pissed that it wasn't united airlines, because i wanted to listen to ch.9 when that happened. We flew delta.

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Joined: Sun May 12, 2002 2:25 am

RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 3:36 am

My worst was on an AA 757 flight from LAX to BOS, about 5 years ago. The captain was making an announcement "On the right side of the aircraft..." suddenly, the plane lurched upward, then down, then shook violently, it lasted about a minute. The F/A's were doing a beverage service. Ice, cans, cups, flew everywhere, one cart tipped over backward. Two F/a's fell into rows of seats. Overheads popped open, and bags fell everywhere. The usual screaming, etc... After it was over the captain finished "... before I was interrupted, I was going to say, you'd see the grand canyon out of the right side of the aircraft. but, we're fine, everything is ok". Some passengers helped the F/a's right the cart, and gather up the mess. Some bumps and bruises but, no major injuries.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 3:56 am

Good god, on all my trips I've yet to see an FA go whizzing into the lavatory, or pinned to the ceiling by forces of gravity. Nothing remotely interesting to speak of ... however. ...

Flying into FLL with Southwest - with the hot weather, it can cause things to become somewhat bumpy. About ten minutes before landing we encounter a few bumps, spilt drinks, etcetera .. nothing major .... a girl two rows in front of me decided to throw histrionics and announce " omg, we're going to crash !! " before throwing up in the aisle. How nice.

Taking off from Palma Mallorca on a 767 - right through a storm. My step brother who likes to think he is the tough guy at six foot two with muscles promptly curled up into a ball in his seat - whilst my Dad and I ( both aviation fanatics ) enjoyed the experience and the lightning show.

Flying into ORD from STL on an AA 727. This was in January two years ago, and there were quite a few snowstorms in the area. The descent was interesting to say the least - we'd seem to go up a few foot, then drop suddenly. This went on for a good ten or fifteen minutes, and the woman next to me was mumbling " I'm not flying THIS airline again !! " ... as if AA can control the weather ...
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 4:16 am

Barcode: I always find that there is minor, but prolonged chop when landing in FLL or PBI. About a year ago, I was on a jetBlue flight into FLL when we hit some pretty big bumps over the Everglades with only a couple of cumulous clouds in the sky. A bunch of young kids in front of me started screaming and crying. I tried to keep from laughing too hard.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 4:17 am

This really shows that most people (including me) are somewhat wary of flying and definitely won't enjoy turbulence of any kind. Somebody compared it to bumps on roads, however you can see bumps on roads and know where they will end. Turbulence is a big unknown for everyone.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 12:04 pm

I have 2---NWA 747-400 from MSP-DTW (when they did fly 744 between the two) and over lake Michigan we were going thru T-storms and we hit alot of bad turbulance...bouncing up and down for the rest of the flight, I can still remember the pilot coming on and saying "please stay in your seats, this is going to get rough" he wasn't kidding....and second-lasy July from DTW -LAS in a A-320..same type of thing but it started just past Chicago and went all the way to LAS..we were at 35,000 then we would go down to a lower altitude for "smoother" ride then back up...sure...we rocked side to side and all over the place...I felt bad for the flight crew cause they had to go right back to DTW....
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 1:09 pm

I don't see the big deal in turbulence? Last Tuesday around 3:00Pm Me and my CFI took off from KTMB for a cross country flight to everglades city. The weather was like a normal afternoon in florida a few thunderstorms in the area. We took down the 270 radio out of the dolphin VOR and started our westward course at 1,000Ft. All of the sudden the storms kept on closing in at tamiami airport and my concerned CFI descided to turn back to TMB. Ok so we turned back to the airport and the winds had shifted and we were cleared to land on 9L. the problem was that the on downwind there was a storm cell right in front of that piper and there was rain lightning u name it the only thing absent Turbulence. i dont mean stuff like mircoburts or windshear i mean occasional up and downs and mild to severe jolts but i safely landed the Aircraft on the ground and we cancelled the cross country for the day.

As for worst turbulence in an airliner? well I remember2 years ago out of KORD bound for KMIA aboard an AA 727 about 20 minutes after take off we took a few severe joltsof turbulence people screamed usual stuff. I was enjoying the lighing show. Secured and safe into my seat because i knew the 727 wountd let me down  Big thumbs up

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 1:10 pm

My dad dropped 10000 feet in a prop plane ( ithink it was Mesa airlines or something like that, a feeder in TX)...he told me the F/A was hiding in wherever they hide during stuff like that

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 1:23 pm

Worst has got to be in September of 1999, LAX-SEL. We were over the North Pacific, having passed by ANC not too long before. We started shaking and the seatbelt sign came on. We were moving side to side, then dropping in a cycle that was about 30 seconds long and continued for about 15minutes as the crew tried to get us out of it. Worse was I could hear the engines spooling up and down as the Captain was trying to get us sorted. We weren't flying all over the place, but the FA's had that deer in headlights look that kind of freaked me out. They were holding onto "oh shit" handles in the galley like bull riders and juking with the plane.

It could have been much worse, but at the time it was pretty intense.

is that a light at the end of the tunnel or just a train?
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 5:55 pm

Most approaches to SCL from over the Andes (EZE, MDZ, GRU and MAD flights etc) are quite turbulent and unpredictably can result in an outbreak of panic throughout the cabin. Recently, an inbound A340 Iberia flight from Madrid to Santiago hit an unexpected patch of turbulence on approach to SCL and there were reports of injured and distressed passengers. I have also experienced many of these approaches that come with dives and shakes and swinging of the aircraft.
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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 10:51 pm

Long-time lurker hardly ever post, but this is fascinating.

First incident
National Airlines 747 MIA - JFK, about an hour out of Miami we hit a line of thunderstorms and we dropped - fast, things and people flew around, the oxygen masks came down (by mistake, but it added to everyone's fear) and *everyone* was screaming, including the Captain, exhorting everyone to return to their seats.

Second incident
Eastern Shuttle LGA - DCA, Sultry September evening, the usual thunderstorms around the DC area, we flew around some, I guess we couldn't fly around all of them, and things got progressively bumpier, all of a sudden I heard what I thought was a whine of the engines spooling and the plane shot up like a rocket, then the downdraft hit and we dropped just as quickly. Everyone screamed (including myself) things flying around - the usual. True story - I was right behind a nun and two seats away from a rabbi. Well both were using their hotlines to God and were doing some serious praying!

Not an incident but an observation. Flying from Buffalo to LGA through some pretty good chop, not screaming level but enough so that the cabin crew had to stop the drinks service. Would you believe there was one Yuppie business man who wouldn't shut up about how he wasn't gonna get his ^%^#*% drink and peanuts?
I may be ugly. I may be an American. But don't call me an ugly American.

RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 11:42 pm

It's amazing to me how embellished these turbulent stories can get! I'm sure a small percentage of folks here have been through some rough turbulence of which most pilots would classify as light to moderate. Probably a very, very small percentage of people here have been through what's considered severe turbulence. The claims of "we dropped thousands of feet" from a passenger may have been only 100'.

In all honesty, the uniformed passenger would consider any bumps, no matter what the severity, as a near death experience and their "screaming" would make others feel like it was worse than it was after landing. Heck, I've been flying 25+ years and have never experienced what some of you people claim to experience on a weekly basis.

What makes the turbulence seem worse than it really is...is the simple fact that people feel out of control riding in the back, can't see what's ahead of the plane and simply don't understand the physics of flying or the environment in which airplanes operate. People fear what they don't know or understand.

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RE: Worst Turbulence You've Ever Had...

Sat Jul 06, 2002 11:44 pm

7 September 1977: SQ B707-320 from SIN to BKK ;

An afternoon take-off into a T-storm over Singapore. The aircraft entered cloud at 2,000ft and hit the core cell of hot air rising at high speed to the troposphere. The B707 was pushed up by an almighty force, estimate 100ft per second. Never one downward movement, only up....up....up....up... Outside day light disappeared, the cabin turned an erie darkness.

In the cabin total pandemonium. Hysterical screaming from all. My head was forced on my shoulders, my neck disappeared into my upper torso. At least it felt that way. My bottom hit every metal bar in the seat frame, my legs weighed 100kg. My jaw lowered by itself, my mouth opened.

After several minutes we exited the cloud at the top, reaching 31,000ft in less than 10 mins. Must have been a record for the B707. I was surpised the wings did not snap. Nobody spoke for the rest of the flight to BKK.


Remember that a NLM Cityhopper Fokker F28-Mk4000 broke its wings and crashed in a similar event over Holland in September 1981 on a flight RTM-EIN-HAM.

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