Alaska Airlines passenger on the Boeing plane that lost its door panel said that he was saved by his seatbelt

Seatbelt Saved a Passenger’s Life on Boeing Plane That Lost Door Plug Panel Mid-Flight

A passenger claims that he was only saved by his seatbelt when the door plug panel of a Boeing plane blew mid-flight in January.  

Cuong Tran was seated in row 27 of the Alaska Airlines flight, which was situated immediately behind the door plug that blew off minutes after takeoff. Tran claims that his shoes and socks were suctioned out. He also claims that he injured his foot when he was being sucked towards the opening. 

Serious Emotional Distress

Tran was one of seven passengers of Alaska Airlines flight 1242 suing the airline, Boeing and the door plug manufacturer, Spirit Aerosystems for the incident. The seven passengers claim that it caused them physical injuries and “serious emotional distress, fear, and anxiety.”

This lawsuit came after three other passengers on the same flight sued Boeing and Alaska Airlines for $1 billion. 

Tran and the six other passengers in the latest lawsuit are seeking punitive, compensatory, and general damages. However, the amount wasn’t specified. 

Saved by the Seatbelt

In an email statement, Tran said his shoes and socks were removed from his feet. At the same time, his leg was pulled, and got stuck to the structure in front. He also added that his seatbelt prevented him from being pulled out of the plane. 

Trial lawyer Timothy A. Loranger said, “Our clients — and likely every passenger on that flight— suffered unnecessary trauma due to the failure of Boeing, Spirit AeroSystems, and Alaska Airlines to ensure that the aircraft was in a safe and airworthy condition.”

No Comment from Boeing

Boeing didn’t comment on the lawsuit. The same goes for Spirit Aerosystems. Their spokesperson said “Spirit does not comment on pending litigation. We continue to focus on our operations, customers, and people.”

Tran’s claim that the seatbelt saved him from getting sucked out of the plane wasn’t mention in his lawsuit. However, Loranger said in an email that all these will be mentioned “when they have an opportunity to testify at deposition and at trial.”

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John Michael Jayme
John Michael Jayme is a Travel Analyst for The Jet Set. He writes about news and events affecting the travel industry.

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