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News / Nation & World

Singapore Airlines tightens cabin safety rules after turbulence

By Associated Press
Published: May 24, 2024, 5:27pm

BANGKOK  — Singapore Airlines said Friday it will halt meal services and get all cabin crew to buckle up when planes fly through turbulence as part of tighter cabin measures after one person died and dozens were injured on a flight from London this week.

The airline said it has adopted a “more cautious approach to managing turbulence in-flight” after the Boeing 777 jet heading to Singapore hit extreme turbulence in the Irrawaddy basin on Tuesday, hurling people and items around the cabin.

“In addition to the suspension of hot beverage service when the seat belt sign is on, the meal service will also be suspended,” the airline said in a statement. “Crew members will also return to their seats and secure their seat belts when the seat belt sign is on.”

The plane, carrying 211 passengers and 18 crew members, made a sharp 6,000-foot descent in about three minutes, after which it diverted to Thailand. Officials said the turbulence was believed to have occurred when meals were being served and many people were not using seat belts. A 73-year-old British man died of a suspected heart attack. Forty-six passengers and two crew members remained hospitalized Friday.

Passengers have described the “sheer terror” of the aircraft shuddering, loose items flying and injured people lying on the floor of the plane.

Singapore Airlines issued an apology over the incident.

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