11 passengers left injured after ‘freak turbulence’ onboard jet bound for Manchester

The plane was diverted to Bermuda.

Emily Sergeant Emily Sergeant - 27th December 2023

11 passengers on board a jet bound for Manchester Airport have been left injured after an incident of “freak turbulence”, it has been revealed.

Around 225 people who had previously been on a P&O Caribbean cruise over the festive season were onboard the Maleth Aero flight – which departed from Barbados – were expected to arrive in Manchester shortly before 6am on Christmas Eve (24 December).

But after an incident of turbulence described as being “unexpected” and “freak” occurred, pilots made the decision to divert the plane to Bermuda.

The turbulence was said to have happened about two hours after the plane departed, a P&O spokesperson has confirmed, and a total of 11 passengers received treatment for minor injuries after the plane landed, BBC News reports.

The 13 crew members on board the flight were confirmed to have been unharmed following the incident.

A Maleth Aero passenger charter plane / Credit: Maleth Aero

The Airbus A300-200 charter airline had been due to return its several hundred passengers home just in time for Christmas Day, but instead, they had to spend Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and the majority of Boxing Day in Bermuda before eventually boarding a plane to Manchester Airport late yesterday afternoon.

A P&O spokesperson explained that passengers were accommodated in hotels in Bermuda over the festive period due to “airport operating times” and a lack of flight availabilities.


“Following freak unexpected turbulence, a flight from Barbados to Manchester was diverted to Bermuda on Sunday morning,” the P&O spokesperson confirmed in a statement.

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“We are very sorry for this disruption to the journey following their holiday and we worked round the clock with the airline and hotels to take care of the guests, and to ensure they get home as soon as possible.”

Featured Image – Maleth Aero