A Southwest Airlines flight trying to land at the New Orleans airport on Saturday in the middle of a storm caused passengers on board to start panicking.
The plane was flying from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, to its destination. Upon arriving in New Orleans, the pilot attempted to land the plane in low visibility conditions and storms. After not doing so, the flight was diverted to Panama City, Florida, where it was to refuel and wait for the storm.
The experience of trying to land in a storm was so terrifying that the passengers started crying, screaming and even vomiting on the plane. Some of them were convinced that it was going to be the last day of their lives, so much so that they started sending farewell messages to their loved ones.
"We went through the clouds and the plane was leaning back and forth, going everywhere," said passenger Lauren Bale, who works for CBS-affiliated WWL-TV, at her station.
Bale did not stop there. He went on to describe his "most frightening experience" on his Twitter page.
Finally, when the flight landed in Panama City after being diverted, Bale's relief was evident in his Twitter post: "Now we are in Panama City waiting for the storm." This was all 100% preventable, but @SouthwestAir took a big risk and I honestly feel lucky to be alive #lawx #southwest. "
There were other passengers who shared Bale's feelings.
"It felt like I was about to take off, I felt like I was finished, I felt like I was about to see the baby Jesus and Daddy God," said another passenger, Marie Wary, about the terrifying failed landing .
Another passenger, Sharon Bikoundou, said he did not understand why the pilot tried to land the plane in conditions as severe as "You could not see anything." Without visibility "Describing the pilot's actions, he added:" Just as he was about to land, he got up. "
A spokesman for Southwest Airlines issued the following statement, according to Fox News: " Our main objective is safety. Flight 3461 from Fort Lauderdale to New Orleans arrived four hours late after persistent storms over New Orleans that forced the prolonged celebration near New Orleans to await the authorization of air traffic controllers, followed by a refueling stop at the airport. Panama City before the end of the trip. The safety of our customers and employees, as well as the safe operation of each flight, is our highest priority. "
Although the passengers who had to undertake the trip in heartbreaking weather conditions received compensation for the ordeal, Bale said it was not enough.
" The forecast was for severe weather. The failed landing, proof of the cost of the ticket and SW's apology show that they should never have tried to land when they did. Fortunately, the pilots were able to get us out of that situation, but we should not have put it to begin with, "he wrote on social networks.