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Some Really Bad Turbulence Sent 24 JetBlue Passengers to the Hospital

Passengers said it felt like a "giant hand hit the plane."

As if you needed another reason to stay on the ground this week, a JetBlue plane flying from Boston to Sacramento Thursday night hit such bad turbulence that passengers were launched out of their seats, the Washington Post reports. At least 24 passengers had to be taken to the hospital for evaluation after making an unscheduled landing in Rapid City, South Dakota.

Passengers described the incident as everything from feeling like a "giant hand hit the plane" to "an elevator, 50 stories high" losing control. Some unlucky people not wearing their seatbelts were reportedly jolted out of their seats and launched head-first into the overhead compartment. One guy even caught a woman as she went flying into the ceiling.


"I literally grabbed her out of the air to hold her to the seat," passenger Derek Lindahl told CNN.

The weather was apparently so rough that the pilots were forced to land the plane in Rapid City, where emergency crews promptly boarded the aircraft to treat the two dozen injured passengers. Travelers were then shuffled into a replacement plane to finish their journey to Sacramento.

The good news is that while we can't always trust the weather, the flight crew handled the whole thing like pros. Lindahl praised the JetBlue staff, telling CNN, "Even though all flight crew were injured in some way, as far as I know, they all maintained their calm and never cracked."

Read: These Airplane Nightmares Will Make You Never Want to Fly Again

Photo via Flickr user John Murphy