Pax left stuck in overhead bin, 30 injured after B787 hit by severe turbulence

Eduardo Preve / X

An Air Europa flight from Madrid to Uruguay encountered turbulence so severe that it injured 30 passengers, with one man appearing to hit the ceiling so hard he became stuck in an overhead bin.

The incident occurred on June 30, 2024, when flight UX 45 was en route from Madrid-Barajas Airport (MAD) to Carrasco International Airport (MVD) in Montevideo, Uruguay. 

The Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, with 325 passengers onboard, was flying over the Atlantic Ocean when it was hit by severe turbulence, forcing the flight to make an emergency landing at Governador Aluzio Alves Airport (NAT) in Natal, Brazil.

Image: FlightAware

The aircraft landed safely at 02:30 local time and was met by ambulances and medics. 

The health secretariat from the government of the Rio Grande do Norte state, where Natal is located, said in a statement that 30 passengers had been taken to hospitals with minor abrasions or orthopedic traumas.

Video footage and photographs of the aftermath inside the cabin have been uploaded to various social media platforms, including X (formerly Twitter).

Harrowing scenes show broken aircraft seats, aisles strewn with personal belongings, and aircraft ceiling panels hanging open, exposing wires, oxygen equipment, and electrical items. 

In another video clip that was later uploaded, a man appeared to have been thrown through the ceiling and had to exit via the overhead compartment bin. Fellow passengers are seen trying to dislodge the man from inside the overhead bin.

Air Europa told media outlets that another aircraft was sent from Madrid to collect the passengers and take them onwards to Montevideo, while the turbulence-stricken B787 is currently being examined for damages. 

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