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Two of world's most turbulent flight routes are in Europe

Two of world's most turbulent flight routes are in Europe

Have you ever travelled on any of these routes?

Following the recent news of severe turbulence hitting a Singapore Airlines flight, the most turbulent flights in the world have been revealed - with two of the routes being in Europe.

If you've ever been on an airplane, chances are that you've experienced some form of turbulence.

Similar to a boat bobbing up and down in choppy waters, turbulence is caused by patches of rough air.

Rough patches of air are most frequently caused by adverse weather conditions, such as thunderstorms, flying over certain terrains or too close to other planes.

There is also the phenomena of 'clean-air turbulence' which is caused when two bodies of air moving at different speeds meet and often takes pilots by surprise.

When a plane encounters turbulence, the aircraft will judder up and down or side to side.

Thankfully turbulence is - in the majority of cases - nothing to worry about, however nervous flyers are often sent into a panic the moment they see the seatbelt sign light up.

Turbulence can often leave passengers frightened. (Jasmin Merdan/Getty Images)
Turbulence can often leave passengers frightened. (Jasmin Merdan/Getty Images)

And the recent devastating events of Singapore Airlines flight SQ321, which saw one passenger die as a result, have worried those already nervous flyers even more.

If you're not a fan of bumpy flights, it might be worth checking out this list from forecasting website Turbli, which has compiled the 10 routes from 2023 which were known to experience disruption, which includes two short-haul European trips.

The most turbulent flight route from 2023

Coming in at number one is a flight between the South American countries of Chile and Bolivia, with the 1905km route having the highest eddy dissipation rate (the metric used to measure turbulence) last year.

The second most turbulent

Coming in second place is a 210km trip between Almaty, Kazakhstan and Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.

The most turbulent European routes

The first of the two European routes which make the list is Milan, Italy to Geneva, Switzerland - a route which crosses the high peaks of the alps - which ranks as the fifth most turbulent.

While the similarly mountainous route from Milan, Italy to Zurich, Switzerland comes rounds out the list at number 10.

Other turbulent routes

Flights through China feature the most, with the country appearing on the list four times, while Japan has two flight routes which rank amongst the most turbulent.

Turbulence is usually nothing to worry about, though the recent events on a Singapore Airlines flight have left many shocked and nervous to fly. (Getty Stock Images)
Turbulence is usually nothing to worry about, though the recent events on a Singapore Airlines flight have left many shocked and nervous to fly. (Getty Stock Images)

Here's the list in full:

  1. Santiago (SCL) - Santa Cruz (VVI)
  2. Almaty (ALA) - Bishkek (FRU)
  3. Lanzhou (LHW) - Chengdu (CTU)
  4. Centrair (NGO) - Sendai (SDJ)
  5. Milan (MXP) - Geneva (GVA)
  6. Lanzhou (LHW) - Xianyang (XIY)
  7. Osaka (KIX) - Sendai (SDJ)
  8. Xianyang (XIY) - Chengdu (CTU)
  9. Xianyang (XIY) - Chongqing (CKG)
  10. Milan (MXP) - Zurich (ZRH)

Meanwhile, Turbli also reported that the most turbulent airports of 2023 was awarded to Santiago (Chile), followed Wellington (New Zealand) and the Japanese airports of Natori, Sapporo, Osaka, Tokoname and Tokyo.

In-flight turbulence is unlikely to cause a plane to crash, however extreme cases have caused injuries (and sometimes fatalities) to passengers in the cabin.

The case of extreme turbulence on the Singapore Airlines flight earlier this week lead to the death of 73-year-old British passenger Geoffrey Kitchen yesterday (21 May).

The father-of-two, who was known to have a pre-existing heart condition - is thought to have suffered a heart attack amid the chaos on the London to Singapore flight.

Featured Image Credit: Getty Stock Images

Topics: Travel, Europe, World News

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