Five passengers on a United Airlines flight have been hospitalized after the plane was hit by severe turbulence.
Flight 128 left Rio de Janeiro’s Galealo International Airport at 10.23pm on Monday 19 December to travel to Houston.
During the journey, there was unexpected turbulence; as the aircraft flew over Cancun, Mexico, it dropped by 500 feet in seconds, without warning, according to Fox Weather.
A statement on FlightAware.com read: “United flight 128 encountered unexpected turbulence while enroute to Houston. Upon arrival, two passengers and three crew members were met by medical personnel and taken to a local hospital with minor injuries.”
United has stated that there were no reports of rough air when the plane took off. The full flight time from Rio de Janeiro to Houston is around 10.5 hours, and turbulence began at 3.25am.
The flight landed at 5.28am in Houston, and medical crews immediately attended to those injured during the turbulence.
Five passengers were taken to a nearby hospital for treatment, and United has said they all suffered minor injuries.
The incident comes shortly after passengers experienced “terrifying” extreme turbulence on a Hawaiian Airlines flight.
Passengers on the flight from Phoenix to Honolulu described their experience of the severe turbulence while the plane was at 36,000 feet.
One of told how she was “flown into the ceiling and slammed into the ground”, and could only see “caved-in ceiling panels and a cracked bathroom sign that was hanging”.
She said it was “the most terrifying experience I’ve been through in my whole 40 years of life”, and she saw multiple passengers with bloody cuts.