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Man almost sucked out of plane among passenger lawsuits seeking £918,000,000 compensation

Man almost sucked out of plane among passenger lawsuits seeking £918,000,000 compensation

The man was onboard an Alaska Airlines flight in January

A passenger who was almost sucked out of a plane mid flight is amongst many seeking legal action against Boeing and Alaska Airlines.

Back in January, and Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 Max 9 was forced to make an emergency landing after part of the fuselage and a window were blown out shortly after take off.

The plane had taken off from Portland in Oregon at around 5pm local time and was heading to Ontario, California, but just minutes into the flight disaster struck.

A plug covering an unused exit door blew off the Boeing 737 Max 9 as it cruised about three miles over Oregon.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said the lost door plug was found days later near Portland, Oregon, in the back garden of a home.

You can watch footage below:

Passenger Cuong Tran was seated in a window seat behind the door plug.

Miraculously, he was saved by his seatbelt but the rapid depressurisation sucked away his iPhone and tore off his shoes and socks.

Understandably, the whole experience was incredibly traumatising.

"I was just dozing off, my phone in hand, and then the captain messaged we were above 10,000 feet," he told The Los Angeles Times.

"Next thing I know, I hear this whoosh sound — really strong-sounding wind.

"I was just in disbelief, to be honest. I was like what’s going on here, why does everything feel so weird? Next thing I know I’m like oh, s— there’s a big hole. I was just registering everything in slow motion."

Passengers could see right outside the plane, and a piece of debris was recovered from a teacher's garden.

An investigation into the incident by the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) found that four blots had been missing from the door plug.

Alongside six other passengers, Tran is now suing Alaska Airlines, along with manufacturer Boeing and its supplier, Spirit Aerosystems.

The suit was filed on Thursday (14 March) and is one of several other existing lawsuits regarding the incident, from as many as 33 passengers.

Some of the lawsuits are asking for up to $1bn (£918,000,000) in damages.

One lawsuit claims that the oxygen masks malfunctioned, while others allege they were hit with flying debris and some passengers suffered injuries such as whiplash.

An investigation found that four blots were missing.

Ari Friedman, one of the lawyers representing the passengers, said: "We can look at it through the lens of the product defects, or we can also look at it through the lens of what happens when companies think that they can start cutting corners, save their share price a few points, at the expense of the travelling public and the communities that these planes fly."

According to NBC News, both Boeing and Alaska Airlines have denied liability against the alleged damages, with Boeing saying their lawsuit should be dismissed.

They also said they cannot be held responsible for any alleged injures because it's products were 'improperly maintained, or misused by persons and/or entities other than Boeing'.

Meanwhile, Alaska Airlines also claimed that any injuries from the door plug blowing out 'were caused by the fault of persons or entities over whom Alaska Airlines has no control … including Defendant The Boeing Company and/or non-party Spirit AeroSystems'.

LADbible has contacted Boeing, Alaska Airlines and Spirit AeroSystems for comment.

Featured Image Credit: KPTV/TikTok/strawberr.vy

Topics: News, US News, Travel