Dozens injured aboard Boeing Dreamliner after ‘strong movement’ on flight


At least 50 people were injured Monday by what officials described as a “strong movement” on a Chilean plane travelling from Sydney to Auckland, New Zealand.

LATAM Airlines said in a statement that there was “a technical event during the flight which caused a strong movement.” It did not elaborate on what happened.

Passengers were met by paramedics and more than 10 emergency vehicles when the flight touched down in Auckland.

About 50 people were treated at the scene for mostly mild injuries, with 13 taken to a hospital, an ambulance spokesperson said.

One patient was believed to be in serious condition.

Passengers said a number of people were not wearing seatbelts when flight LA800 suddenly dropped.

Radio New Zealand interviewed several passengers arriving in Auckland, including Brian Jokat, who said the plane “just dropped” about two-thirds of the way into the flight.

“I thought I was dreaming. I opened my eyes and [a nearby passenger] was on the roof of the plane on his back, looking down on me. It was like The Exorcist.”

The man broke his ribs when he fell back to the floor, Jokat said.

The Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner landed at Auckland Airport as scheduled and was due to continue on to Santiago, Chile.

“LATAM regrets the inconvenience and injury this situation may have caused its passengers, and reiterates its commitment to safety as a priority within the framework of its operational standards,” the airline said.

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