Coroner Says Woman Sucked Out Of Plane Died From Blunt Impact Trauma
A coroner has ruled the woman who was sucked out of a window of a Southwest Airlines plane during a flight died as a result of blunt impact trauma to the head, neck and torso. It's reported when one of the engines burst at 32,000 feet, debris from that incident hit the side of the plane and caused the window to break open.
Passengers pulled Jennifer Riordan's upper body back into the cabin and started CPR.
The Philadelphia Department of Public Health has concluded that the 43-year-old's death was accidental.
Registered school nurse Peggy Phillips was the one doing compressions inside the plane and told ABC: "The window had broken and the suction, the negative pressure, had pulled her outside the plane partially.
"These two wonderful men the EMT and a passenger managed to get her back inside the plane and we lay her down and we started CPR."
Investigators are now conducting an investigation into what caused the engine to erupt mid-flight.
Captain Tammie Jo Shults and first officer Darren Ellisor have said in a joint statement: "Our hearts are heavy. On behalf of the entire crew, we appreciate the outpouring of support from the public and our co-workers as we all reflect on one family's profound loss.
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"We joined our company today in focused work and interviews with investigators."
That pilot has been hailed a hero for the way she handled that emergency situation. The audio of her speaking to an air traffic control officer has been released to the public and it illustrates how calmly she explained her situation and how she acted quickly to keep everyone safe.
Passenger Alfred Tumlinson told the Associated Press: "[The pilot] has nerves of steel. That lady, I applaud her. I'm going to send her a Christmas card - I'm going to tell you that - with a gift certificate for getting me on the ground.
"She was awesome. The lady, the crew, everything, everybody was immaculate. They were so professional in what they did to get us on the ground."
While the pilot knew how to handle the situation, some passengers thought differently.
When the cabin depressurised and oxygen masks dropped from above, Marty Martinez paid $8 for onboard WiFi so he could do a Facebook Live video and say goodbye to the people he loved, according to the Daily Mail.
He reportedly wrote: "I want you to know that I love you all and thank you for all you've done."
Featured Image Credit: PA