Passengers 'Throwing Up' And 'Hyperventilating' As Plane Fails Landing Attempt In Storm Eunice
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A plane passenger travelling amid Storm Eunice has described the 'palpable tension' on board as the aircraft failed one of its landing attempts.
Sheffield University senior lecturer Tim Craggs was travelling from Manchester Airport to Heathrow this morning, February 18, when his plane found itself caught in the strong winds caused by Storm Eunice.
The severe weather has prompted the Met Office to issue rare red warnings, while BBC Weather has described the event as possibly 'one of the worst storms in three decades'.
Storm Eunice is forecast to cause poor weather conditions across the UK and Europe today. We are working in close collaboration with our airport partners to minimise any disruption.— Heathrow Airport (@HeathrowAirport) February 18, 2022
Please continue to check your flight status with your airline before making your way to Heathrow.
Tim told UNILAD the flight had been going relatively well until it started its descent into Heathrow, when it was hit with the 'worst turbulence [Tim has] ever experienced'. Other passengers started throwing up due to the rough conditions, and things only got worse when the flight made its first attempt at landing.
The lecturer described how passengers braced themselves on the seats in front as the plane approached the runway, and though at first they 'seemed to be doing okay', the plane 'suddenly dipped to the left' when they were seconds from touching down.
The impacts of the wind prompted the pilot to take the plane back into the air, but despite the pilot's 'air of complete confidence', the ordeal left 'several passengers' visibly scared and 'hyperventilating', Tim said.
There was just one person who seemed to be enjoying the situation – an 18-month-old baby who was sitting next to Tim, who was 'giggling with every drop and jump while his mum was sick behind his head'.
Following the first failed landing, the passengers had to endure another 10-15 minutes in the 'turbulent air', with 'no guarantee of landing' any time soon. Tim described the woman next to him as being 'quite distressed by this point', and Tim himself began to pray for a safe landing as the pilot prepared for his second attempt.
He recalled 'remembering Jesus calming the storm and hoping for a similar miracle', adding: 'No one on the aircraft wanted to have to do this again.'
Thankfully, the pilot managed to successfully land the plane on his second attempt, and the entire cabin 'burst into spontaneous applause' once they were safely back on solid ground, 'as much out of sheer relief as for appreciation to the pilot'.
Tensions quickly cleared once the possibility of falling from the sky was taken out of the equation, and Tim commended the pilot for doing 'brilliantly, not just in the expert navigation of the plane in such crazy conditions, but also in presenting an air of complete confidence and calm after the first failed landing attempt'.
After making it to Heathrow, Tim and his colleagues are now awaiting a connection to San Francisco, which is set to take off this afternoon. The group are travelling for a big meeting for their new company, Exciting Instruments, and so are 'really happy' to have made it as far as they have.
One of Tim's colleagues is 'not at all looking forward' to facing Eunice for a second time after being 'very sick' on the first flight, and Tim himself has admitted this morning's flight was the first in which he 'ever felt in real danger'.
Storm Eunice is set to clear towards the end of today, hopefully allowing hundreds of delayed and cancelled flights to get back on track and to prevent those on board from experiencing further bad turbulence.
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