Dangerous turbulence

[Travel ★★]


(P1) Terrifying footage shows passengers on a packed plane praying and crying as it experiences severe and unexpected turbulence, rocking it from side to side.

(P2) More than 30 people traveling on the Etihad Airways flight to Indonesia were injured when the plane suddenly hit turbulence. Many suffered broken bones and, according to reports, nine of those hurt are still in the hospital. Passengers can be seen raising their hands in the air as they fear the unknown.

(P3) The plane was flying from the Emirati capital of Abu Dhabi to Jakarta in Indonesia yesterday and it did land safely. It was about 45 minutes away from Jakarta, flying over Sumatra, when the turbulence hit. It’s understood officials from the airport and Indonesian National Transportation Safety Committee have inspected the plane.

(P4) The Federal Aviation Administration says that most turbulence accidents happen at 30,000 feet (9.1 kilometers) or above. It can be hard to predict, and the injuries it causes can’t always be prevented by wearing seat belts.

WORDS: 163

SOURCE: http://www.newsinlevels.com/products/dangerous-turbulence-level-3/

VOCABULARY: footage, packed, rocking, unknown, inspected, predict, prevented


If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.

  1. Briefly, summarize the content of the article in your own words.
  2. Have you ever experienced turbulence in an airplane before? If so, explain how it felt?
  3. A lot of passengers broke bones. Have you ever broken a bone? If so, which one/s?
  4. Do you think airplanes are safe? Why or why not?
  5. If you were on this flight, how do you think you would have reacted?


What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • Side to side (P1)
  • Fear the unknown (P2)
  • Flying over (P2)

Cambly Practice Button

Image Source: By Richard Vandervord – http://www.airliners.net/photo/Etihad-Airways/Airbus-A380-861/2574151/L/, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=37963686

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