‘We all hit the roof’: Severe turbulence forces diversion of Australia-bound plane

Montreal: An Air Canada flight from Vancouver to Sydney has been diverted to Hawaii after severe turbulence left 35 customers with minor injuries, the carrier said in a statement.

Flight AC33, carrying 269 passengers and 15 crew, was flying from Vancouver to Sydney when the Boeing 777 aircraft "encountered … sudden turbulence approximately two hours past Hawaii", the statement said.

The Air Canada flight was travelling from Vancouver to Sydney when it struck severe turbulence.

"We hit turbulence and we all hit the roof and everything fell down, and stuff … people went flying," passenger Jess Smith told CBC News.

"I watched a whole bunch of people hit the ceiling of the plane," said another passenger Alex MacDonald.

"A couple of the air hostesses were bringing food out at the time, and they hit the roof as well. But as a whole people seem to be OK; didn't seem to be any major injuries."

"A couple of the air hostesses were bringing food out at the time, and they hit the roof as well. But as a whole people seem to be OK; didn't seem to be any major injuries."

Passenger Luke Wheeldon told Honolulu news station KTIV that about half the passengers were not wearing seatbelts.

"There was no warning and then half of them, their head hit the roof all at once," he said.

The turbulence struck the plane at 36,000 feet (10,973 metres), about 966 kilometres south-west of Honolulu, said US Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Ian Gregor.

AAP

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