WATCH: Turbulence on Shanghai-Beijing Flight Injures 2

By Alistair Baker-Brian, July 12, 2023

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A video showing severe turbulence onboard a flight from Shanghai to Beijing has been doing the rounds on Chinese social media. 

The chaos resulted in two people – a passenger and a flight attendant – being hospitalized after landing in the Chinese capital. They were reportedly “thrown to the ceiling” of the plane. 

Watch the video below: 

The incident occurred on Air China flight CA1524 from Shanghai to Beijing on Monday, July 10. In a post via their official Weibo account, Air China stated the following: 

“On July 10, 2023, Air China flight CA1524 (Shanghai-Beijing, Airbus A330-300) experienced sudden clear air turbulence mid-flight. 

“The aircrew and service crew followed standard procedures to deal with this, doing everything possible to ensure passengers’ safety. 

“On this occasion, one passenger and one service crew member were injured. 

“The flight landed normally in Beijing at 5.18pm, after which Air China staff arranged for the injured parties to be taken to hospital for medical treatment. 

“We would like to express our sympathy and condolences to the injured parties. We will always do our utmost to ensure safe travel. 

“Thank you to all passengers for their care and support.” 


The official Weibo post from Air China regarding the incident. Screengrab via Weibo/@中国国际航空

Turbulence – usually caused by one or more of either mountains, jet streams or storms – is often part and parcel of flying. However, it generally doesn’t result in injuries. 

According to National Geographic, weather forecasts and pilot reports play a key part in predicting turbulence.

However, predicting exactly where and when turbulence will kick in during the course of a flight is not always so easy, especially when it comes to thunderstorms, which can result in turbulence far away from where the storm hits. 

Robert Sharman – a turbulence researcher at the US-based National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) – has been working on a turbulence system which creates more ‘nowcasting’ predictions. 

Part of Sharman’s research involves an algorithm which uses information from onboard sensors accounting for factors such as velocity, wind speed, air pressure, roll angle and more. 

[Cover image via Tencent Video]

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