Passengers were eating breakfast when suddenly the plane plunged 6,000 feet and oxygen masks dropped. Liu was able to safely land the plane about 20 minutes later, though that must have felt like an eternity for everyone in the cabin, since no one knew what was going on.
"We didn't know what was going on and we panicked," one passenger told China News Service. "The oxygen masks dropped... We experienced a few seconds of free-fall before it stabilized again."
Miraculously, the pilot who was partially sucked out suffered only minor injuries to his wrist and face. One member of the cabin crew also suffered a minor injury to their wrist, but most passengers were left unscathed, at least physically. Naturally, Liu is being hailed as a hero for bringing the plane down safely under such insane circumstances.
The cause of the freak accident is still being investigated, but it's especially unnerving in light of the tragic incident on a Southwest Airlines flight earlier this month, when a passenger was killed after an engine exploded and caused a window to break mid-flight. However, they both could have been much worse if it weren't for a couple pilots with nerves of steel.
h/t BBC News