Most of us are lucky enough to be able to say they've never flown through severe turbulence. It's the kind of seat-soiling, skull crashing ride that you will never forget in your lifetime. One passenger on American Airlines caught their ordeal on video Tuesday, when turbulence injured several passengers.
You can hear the horror and fear in the passengers' screams — the creaking of the seats and overhead bins as the plane pitches and rolls. You even hear the guy filming it say a short prayer:
"Dear Lord, let us down safely. I love my family. I love my family very much."
Rants of a Sassy Stew says the passenger filming was John Mitchell. The turbulence was due to a massive winter storm off the coast of Japan. American Airlines flight 280 encountered the storm, which caused injuries to 10 passengers and four crew members on board the Boeing 777-200. As a result of the injuries, the pilots had to make an unscheduled landing at Tokyo's Narita airport.
I've said it before and I'll say it again — wear your seatbelt when you're at your seat. Planes find turbulence in both storms and clear air. I don't see any of this being American's fault. If you do fly into turbulence (while wearing your seatbelt) try to keep calm. The wing isn't going to just snap off, causing the plane to fall out of the sky. They're designed to withstand stresses far beyond anything the natural world can throw at them. Except for maybe geese.
Paul Thompson is a aviation journalist with over 13 years of experience working in the airline industry, who maintains the website Flight Club for Jalopnik.com. You can contact Paul to submit story ideas, your own "Plane Porn" photos, and comments regarding this or any other aviation topic via email at Paul@Jalopnik.com