Bradley Airport

1 Dead After Business Jet Encounters Severe Turbulence

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A passenger on a plane that was diverted to Bradley International Airport after a medical emergency on Friday has died and the National Transportation Safety Board said it was related to turbulence.

Five people were aboard the Bombardier executive jet that was shaken by turbulence late Friday afternoon while traveling from Keene, New Hampshire, to Leesburg, Virginia, said Sarah Sulick, a spokesperson for the National Transportation Safety Board.

The extent of the damage to the aircraft was unclear and the NTSB did not provide details including whether the victim was wearing a seatbelt.

Connecticut State Police said they were called to the airport at about 3:50 p.m. for a medical assist after a private plane landed at Bradley.

A person onboard was taken to a nearby hospital after suffering a medical emergency. The NTSB later said a passenger on the plane had died. The person's identity has not been released.

The jet is owned by Conexon, a company based in Kansas City, Missouri, according to a Federal Aviation Administration database. The company, which brings high-speed internet to rural communities, declined comment Saturday.

NTSB investigators were interviewing the two crew members and surviving passengers as part of a probe into the deadly encounter with turbulence, Sulick said. The jet’s cockpit voice and data recorders were sent to NTSB headquarters for analysis, she said.

The FAA and the NTSB will investigate the incident.

Bombardier has released a statement saying in part, "Bombardier is deeply saddened by this tragic event. We extend our sincerest sympathies to all those affected by this accident. Bombardier will fully support and provide assistance to all authorities as needed."

The company said the Bombardier Air Safety Investigation Office is in contact with the NTSB and has dispatched an Auxiliary Air Safety Investigator to the aircraft.

Turbulence, which is unstable air in the atmosphere, remains a cause for injury for airline passengers despite airline safety improvements over the years.

NBC Connecticut / Associated Press
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