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Air New Zealand passenger breaks leg during turbulence, continues 7-hour flight

An Air New Zealand passenger suffered a broken leg when turbulence struck a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner shortly after leaving Bali on a seven-hour flight to Auckland Airport (AKL). 

According to The New Zealand Herald, the passenger was returning from the lavatory around 30 minutes after takeoff when the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner suffered severe turbulence.  

During the turbulence, the Air New Zealand Dreamliner “dropped”, resulting in the 47-year-old German passenger fracturing his tibia and fibula. The exact nature of how the fractures occurred was not reported. 

With six and a half hours of the flight remaining the decision was made to continue to Aukland where the passenger could receive treatment rather than opting to divert to another airport.  

A doctor onboard the flight was able to provide immediate medical treatment and the passenger was provided with pain relief.  

According to Hato Hone St John, paramedics met the aircraft at AKL at around 05:40 on April 17, 2024, and transferred the patient to Middlemore Hospital in Aukland.  

The New Zealand Herald reported that the paramedics described his injuries as “moderate”.  

‘Clear air turbulence’

Air New Zealand confirmed to the news outlet that the passenger’s injuries were as a result of “clear air turbulence” which is described as “sudden severe turbulence occurring in cloudless regions”. 

Air New Zealand’s Chief Operational Integrity and Safety Officer Captain David Morgan told The New Zealand Herald that during a medical incident crew would contact Flightcare Global. 

A decision regarding the best course of action for the patient would then be recommended by the Flightcare Global team with assistance from any medical experts helping on the aircraft.  

“The safety and wellbeing of our customers and crew is our number one priority. Our crew are trained to respond to medical emergencies and always prioritize the wellbeing of the customers onboard the aircraft,” Captain Morgan said.  

The passenger was said to be in a stable condition in hospital and awaiting surgery.  

The post Air New Zealand passenger breaks leg during turbulence, continues 7-hour flight appeared first on AeroTime.

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