Chicago Workers’ Compensation Lawyers & Illinois Injury Lawyers

A Recent Accident Again Highlights the Dangers of Turbulence in the Air for Illinois and Other US Flight Attendants and Travelers

| May 29, 2024 | Aviation Accidents |

For some of the men and women who serve air passengers every day, being a flight attendant is a dream job, allowing them to travel the world. For some passengers, an airplane flight may be the trip of a lifetime, perhaps even a “bucket list” item. Those dreams can turn nightmarish, though, if the plane encounters severe turbulence.

Turbulence, research shows, is the #1 cause of in-flight injuries in non-fatal accidents, both to passengers and flight attendants alike. While some instances of turbulence can be unforeseen and unavoidable, other instances are situations where more could have been done but was not. If you’ve been injured by in-flight turbulence, it is possible that your injuries were the result, at least in part, of human errors. When that happens, you may be entitled to compensation. To learn more about how you may be able to proceed in pursuing legal action, talk to a knowledgeable Chicago aviation accident attorney about your situation.

A recent example of this kind of injury, and just how devastating it can be, was the one suffered by an Oklahoma-based flight attendant, named V.A. As KFOR reported, the flight attendant described hers as a “dream job.” One day, though, as her flight approached McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas, it encountered severe turbulence. At the time, V.A. was doing her regular work duties, which meant she was engaged in some final cleanup in the galley. When turbulence hit, it shook the plane so badly that it threw her into the plane’s ceiling and then she slammed down to the floor, according to the report.

In the end, V.A. had a broken fibula, torn tendons and ligaments in one ankle, knee pain and wrist pain. The broken leg rendered her unable to work and forced to remain home while living on workers’ compensation benefits, according to the report.

V.A.’s injuries are, unfortunately, not unique. FAA information explains that turbulence is the top cause of injuries to passengers and crew in non-fatal accidents. The FAA released data this past summer that showed that 12 passengers and five crew members were hurt in the previous year due to turbulence, according to an AIN Online report.

Not all turbulence incidents are preventable, but some are. When the latter happens, and you are hurt, you may have a legal claim based upon negligence. For example, if a plane’s flight crew knew that it was approaching a stretch of turbulent conditions and did not turn on the “fasten seatbelts” sign and instruct passengers to remain seated and belted, then that can be a problem. Say, for example, that happened and you, as a passenger, moved about the cabin to use the bathroom, only to be thrown by turbulence and suffer a substantial injury, such as broken bones or serious soft tissue damage. In that situation, you might have a case. Similarly, if the flight crew instructed passengers to remain seated, but did not instruct the cabin crew about the impending turbulent conditions, only to have turbulence throw a flight attendant and cause serious harm, that, too, might constitute actionable negligence in some circumstances.

If you’ve been hurt in an aviation accident, consult the skilled Chicago injury attorneys at Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca. Not all aviation accidents are actionable, but some may be depending on the facts of your situation. Our attorneys have been providing effective and thoughtful representation for many years and are ready to handle your case. To set up a free case evaluation, contact us at 312-724-5846 or through our website.

More Blog Posts:

Flight Attendants: Did your Tumi bag contribute to your injury?, Chicago Injury Attorneys Blog, Sept. 5, 2018

Will Incidents of Unexpected Midair Turbulence Only Get More Frequent and More Severe?, Chicago Injury Attorneys Blog, June 11, 2018