Flying is never an entirely pleasant experience, but it's definitely a lot better if the only part of the plane that touches the ground is the wheels. Unfortunately, that's not exactly a guarantee.
For instance, a Southwest Airlines plane made three separate landing attempts at Bradley International Airport in Connecticut on Monday, and the winds were so intense that the tip of a wing actually scrapped the runway. The Orlando Sentinel, citing the industry publication the Aviation Herald, reports that passengers were vomiting from the turbulence. Officials from the Federal Aviation Administration are now investigating the incident.
The aircraft was eventually diverted to T. F. Green Airport in Warwick, Rhode Island, and there it was verified that the right wing was damaged. Southwest apologized to the 146 passengers and offered refunds for tickets and vouchers for future flights.
“With each fail they would go back up, circle and then descend again to try and land,” said passenger Christine Orlovsky-Lascano. “So, with each descent that we experienced, there was horrible turbulence that was making a good portion of the people on the plane vomit.”
“My 3-year-old vomited twice, my older two boys were in a scared state of shock,” she continued. "My 10-year-old asked if 'what happened to planes on 9/11 was going to happen to this plane.'”
The Sentinel reports that the FAA may require a written defense of the plane's operations.
“We are reaching out to our customers on the flight to offer our apologies, refund their ticket and extend a gesture of a goodwill flight voucher for a future trip on Southwest,” a spokesperson for Southwest said in a statement, stressing that there were no injuries.
“To be honest, I’m not ready to think about flying anytime soon,” Orlovsky-Lascano added. “Safe to say as we exited the plane, every other row had used barf bags.”