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B741, en-route, Pacific Ocean, 1997

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Summary
On 28th December 1997, a Boeing 747-100 being operated by United Airlines, which had departed from Tokyo for Hawaii, encountered severe turbulence thought to have been associated with a Jet Stream over the Pacific Ocean.
Event Details
When December 1997
Actual or Potential
Event Type
Weather
Day/Night Night
Flight Conditions VMC
Flight Details
Aircraft BOEING 747-100
Operator United Airlines
Domicile United States
Type of Flight Public Transport (Passenger)
Origin Narita Airport
Intended Destination Honolulu International Airport
Actual Destination Narita Airport
Take off Commenced Yes
Flight Airborne Yes
Flight Completed Yes
Flight Phase Cruise
ENR
Location En-Route
Origin Narita Airport
Destination Honolulu International Airport
Location
Approx. Pacific Ocean, 870 NM SE of Tokyo Narita, Japan
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WX
Tag(s) CAT encounter
CS
Tag(s) Turbulence Injury - Cabin Crew
Turbulence Injury - Pax with Seat Belts off"Turbulence Injury - Pax with Seat Belts off" is not in the list (Disruptive Pax, Turbulence Injury - Cabin Crew, Cabin Stowage - Pax Items, Toilet compartment fire, Cabin furnishings fire, Evacuation slides deployed, Pax oxygen mask drop, Unauthorised PED use, IFE fire, Cabin air contamination, ...) of allowed values for the "CS" property.
Cabin Stowage - Pax Items
Outcome
Damage or injury Yes
Aircraft damage Minor
Injuries Few occupants
Fatalities Few occupants (1)
Causal Factor Group(s)
Group(s) Aircraft Operation
Safety Recommendation(s)
Group(s) None Made
Investigation Type
Type Independent

Description

On 28th December 1997, a Boeing 747, operated by United Airlines, which had departed from Tokyo heading for Hawaii, encountered severe turbulence thought to have been associated with a Jet Stream over the Pacific Ocean.

Several passengers and crew members sustained serious injuries and one passenger subsequently died. Although Midway was possibly closer, the captain elected to return to Tokyo where the medical facilities were better. The aircraft did not sustain any structural damage but there was significant damage to fixtures and fittings in the cabin.

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