The frightening consequences of airplane turbulence

What is turbulence, really? -
Turbulence is an irregular motion of the air resulting from eddies and vertical currents. Put more simply, turbulence is a change in the air around your plane.

Turbulence explained -
There are several types of turbulence that can make your flight uneven and bumpy.

Thermal turbulence -
Thermal turbulence is a weather phenomenon defined as rising thermals of air generated by surface heating.

Frontal turbulence -
Frontal turbulence describes a cold air mass pushing up warm air, which causes an abrupt wind shift and therefore turbulence.

Mountain wave turbulence -
As the description suggests, mountain wave turbulence is turbulence generated by strong winds blowing across mountain ranges.

Is turbulence worse in light aircraft? - Turbulence is typically more severe in small planes because they weigh less.

Dangers of air turbulence -
Depending on its severity, turbulence can cause injuries to passengers and crew on board. At the very least it can induce fear and anxiety among flyers.

Danger of injury -
Passengers and crew are also likely to be injured by luggage falling out of overhead bins and hitting them on the head.

How to cope with turbulence -
The most obvious safety precaution to take against an encounter with turbulence is to wear your seat belt, even when the seat belt signs are turned off.

In-flight risk to infants -
Babies and youngsters are especially at risk from in-flight turbulence. 

Understanding turbulence -
Understanding what turbulence is and why it occurs can help lessen the alarm and dread many passengers feel when they experience the phenomenon.

What do pilots do during turbulence? - When a pilot does encounter a prolonged rough patch of air, they will often work to find a smoother flight path.

Is turbulence less pronounced at night? - While it can happen after dark, passengers flying at night are statistically less likely to experience turbulence. 

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