Your next flight may experience turbulence, therefore

Aircraft turbulence is likely to become more frequent in the coming years. But no safety risk during the flight.

During an airplane flight, it may happen that you encounter a turbulent area. More or less violent, the latter are quite impressive for travelers. They typically occur when airplanes in flight pass through so-called “wind shear” zones. With rising and falling air currents, yo-yos the plane.

According to a recent CNN passenger survey, nearly 65,000 planes experience turbulence every year. But in addition to these “shaken” planes, the study explains that another 5,000 planes are victims of “severe” turbulence. Results that are not surprising Paul Williams, professor at the University of Reading (UK) and specialist on the subject.

Stronger turbulence on the way

In his latest research, he explains that heavier turbulence will double or even triple over the next few decades. A phenomenon that can be explained with the advent of “turbulence in clear skies”. Unpredictable, they act due to “air pockets” and cause the plane to fall quickly. According to the US Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), they were responsible for 28% of aircraft crashes that occurred between 2009 and 2018.

A frightening figure, but Paul Williams wants to be reassuring. He assures that air travel is not becoming more dangerous and that this turbulence, although unpredictable in nature, is not that great a danger. He explains that current aircraft construction standards drastically reduce risks.

30 minutes of turbulence for a transatlantic flight

According to his research, turbulence will be more frequent and longer. The researcher cites a London-New York flight as an example. A classic transatlantic crossing of this type should experience about ten minutes of turbulence in a classic flight. The scientist assures that in 20 or 30 these turbulences will be more intense and will last twice as long.

A problem that is taken very seriously by the whole world of aviation. The president of the Association of Flight Attendants, Sara Nelson, explains that new measures will be taken to prevent accidents aboard the aircraft during a turbulent time. It will therefore no longer be possible for a parent to travel with a child under the age of two on their lap. A procedure already implemented by many airlines around the world.

The NTSB also explains in its report on the topic that turbulence will need to be “better recorded and tracked over time” to facilitate the movement of aircraft between these areas.

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