Air Turbulence: What to Know and How to Protect Yourself
If you've traveled by plane and experienced air turbulence, you know that sometimes it can be a little scary. While no one likes turbulence, sometimes it is unavoidable. It can even occur seemingly out of nowhere on a perfectly clear day.
While turbulence is an accepted part of air travel, there are things you can do to ensure your safety and the safety of those around you should turbulence occur on your next flight.
What is air turbulence?
Clear air turbulence is air movement created by atmospheric pressure, jet streams, air around mountains, cold or warm weather fronts, or thunderstorms. It can be unexpected and can happen when the sky appears to be clear.
What should passengers do to avoid injuries?
Statistically speaking, flying is the safest way to travel. Passengers can easily prevent injuries from unexpected air turbulence by keeping their seatbelt securely fastened at all times while seated.
Additionally, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) offers the following tips for staying safe in flight:
- Listen to the flight attendants. Pay attention to the safety briefing at the beginning of your flight and read the safety briefing card.
- Buckle up. Keep you and your family safe by wearing a seatbelt at all times.
- Use an approved child safety seat or device if your child is under two.
- Prevent inflight injuries by adhering to your airline's carry-on restrictions.
What do airlines do to avoid turbulence and prevent passenger injuries?
Working together with the Commercial Aviation Safety Team (CAST), the FAA developed guidance material to help air carriers and other operators prevent injuries caused by air turbulence.
CAST develops an integrated, data-driven strategy to reduce the commercial aviation fatality risk in the United States and promotes government and industry safety initiatives throughout the world. Some of the material responds to investigative work from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).
The focus of the material (see additional reading) is to help air carriers avoid the conditions that cause turbulence and minimize the risks when airplanes do encounter it. This impacts the operations and training of flight crews, flight attendants, dispatchers and managers.
The FAA recommends that air carriers:
- Improve dispatch procedures by keeping communication channels open full-time;
- Include turbulence in weather briefings;
- Promote real-time information sharing between pilot and dispatcher;
- Reinforce the air carrier's turbulence avoidance policy through dispatcher training;
- Consider rerouting using automation, atmospheric modeling, and data displays; and
- Use all applicable weather data as well as reporting and forecasting graphics.
The FAA also encourages air carriers to use operating procedures and training to prevent turbulence injuries, emphasize the importance of flight attendant's personal safety, promote communication and coordination, and gather data and review the air carrier's history of turbulence encounters and injuries.
Don't Let Car Dealers Take You In with an Illegal Yo-Yo Auto Sale Scam
You've finally filled out all the paperwork for a new or used car and drive it off the lot in triumph. Then, only a few hours (or days or weeks) later, the dealer calls you and tells you that you have to return the car because your financing didn't go through. What's going on? Is this legal? No.
How to Protect Your Personal information When Traveling
Do you have an upcoming vacation or business trip or family vaction? Whether you're traveling across the state or around the world, don't forget to take the necessary precautions to protect your most important asset — your identity! It's easy to take a few simple precautions.
It's easy to Keep Your precious Pets Safe When You're Traveling
Pets are more than animals. They're family. Travel with pets can present a distinct set of challenges, and frequent travelers must address a number of pet safety considerations while preparing to take an animal along on a trip. But it's easier than you might think to keep your pets healthy and happy.
Traveling by Air? Ensure That Your Bag is Packed Properly Before You Get to the Airport.
Packing for an upcoming trip? Do your plans involve air travel? Many common items that consumers use on a daily basis are considered hazardous materials when they are brought onto a commercial airplane. For this reason, these items come with specific packing requirements to which air travelers must adhere.