Eleven passengers hospitalised as flight from Barbados to Manchester forced into emergency landing by turbulence

26 December 2023, 14:50

A file photo of a flight arriving in stormy weather
A file photo of a flight arriving in stormy weather. Picture: Getty

By Kit Heren

Thirteen passengers have been rushed to hospital after a flight from Barbados to Manchester was forced to make an emergency landing in Bermuda.

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The 225 passengers and 13 crew members set off on December 23 and thought they would arrive in time for Christmas.

But a freak incidence of "clear air turbulence" meant Maleth Aero Flight 1975 had to land after just two and a half hours in Bermuda.

That meant passengers were forced to spend Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day on the Atlantic island instead of in the UK.

A replacement plane was scheduled to take off on Boxing Day, and was set to arrive on Wednesday.

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Bermuda's acting minister of National Security, Owen Darrell, said: 'We are aware of the situation and are diligently working to ensure the well-being of all involved.

"We are extremely grateful for the quick response of all our emergency services personnel who ensured the safety of the passengers and crew.'

A spokesperson for P&O Cruises said: "A flight from Barbados to Manchester was diverted to Bermuda earlier yesterday morning following freak (unexpected) turbulence.

"Having explored all flying options and due to airport operating times, guests are in hotels today [25 December].

"The flight home is due to depart tomorrow morning, 26 December, following required legislative aircraft checks.

"We are very sorry for this disruption to their journey following their holiday and we are working with the airline and hotels to take care of them and ensure they get home as soon as possible tomorrow.'"

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