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Sichuan Airlines Co-Pilot Sucked Halfway Out of Broken Window
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Photo courtesy of Fox News.

Summary: A sixth flight has reported a window-related accident in the past month. 

A Chinese airplane had a horrific accident when a windshield shattered during flight and a co-pilot was sucked halfway out of the cockpit, according to CNN.


The ordeal occurred on a Sichuan Airlines flight that took place on Monday. The Airbus A319 from Chongquing to Llaha was at an altitude of 30,000 when the windshield burst.

The co-pilot was sucked towards the breakage, but he remained calm as Captain Liu Chuanjian and his crew made an emergency landing, according to Chinese media reports.

“The situation was very critical. The windshield was blown off at a 10,000-meter-high altitude. The aircraft was in a state of low pressure and a temperature was minus 30 to minus 40 degree Celsius,” Jiang Wenxue, a Civil Aviation Administration (CAA) official, said to Xinhua.

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The co-pilot and a flight attendant sustained injuries, but none of the 119 passengers were hurt in the ordeal. Witnesses said that the people on the flight were screaming when the windshield broke, and that the incident occurred while the flight attendants were serving meals.

Captain Liu said that there was no signs of trouble before the windshield broke.

“There was no sign before the windshield burst. Just a huge noise,” Liu said to China News Service. “When I looked at the other side, the co-pilot was partially blown out of the aircraft. Luckily, he had the belt buckled up. Many devices were malfunctioned and the plane was jolting strongly. It was very difficult to control.”

The airline will soon conduct an investigation, and the Sichuan Airlines incident happened nearly one month after a woman died on a Southwest Airlines flight when her window broke. The victim, Jennifer Riordan, was also partially sucked out of the window.

On the Southwest Airlines flight, an engine part broke midair and shattered the window. Riordan’s body was sucked out, and passengers fought to pull her back in. That incident’s probe is still pending.

Fox News said that the Sichuan Airlines incident is the sixth time in one month where there have been airline window problems. The Southwest flight was the first known occurrence, followed by a window panel falling off an Air India flight, which resulted in three passengers’ injuries. The third occurrence happened on April 25. A Flybe flight in England made an emergency landing when the cockpit windshield broke after takeoff. A week later, another Southwest flight made an emergency stop when a window broke in the cabin. On May 7, a JetBlue flight’s cockpit window cracked, forcing an emergency landing.

What do you think is happening with airplane windows? Let us know in the comments below.


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