Turbulence Makes Traveler Hesitant To Fly

August 24, 2010

in Weather Stories

Debating whether or not to ever fly again…

To date, this was the last plane ride I’ve ever been on. I’m skeptical about getting on another plane, especially after this. Twelve hour flights, 30 minute flights – turbulence is a pretty frightening thing.

Last August (that would be 8/09), I was on a flight from Las Vegas to LAX. This is pretty typical of me as my aunt lives in LA and I live in Vegas and I frequently stay at her house when I visit.  Since I no longer own a car, flying there has become more frequent.

This time around I took my 11-year-old cousin who had never flown before. I was trying to be comforting, positive and as upbeat as possible… which, in the end, turned out to be unnecessary. She was excited – as was I. It was a fun ride there. I gave her, pretty much, a check list of what to expect during the plane ride. It was relatively smooth the entire way.

On the way back, however… it was pretty life changing. A 30 minute “air time” flight turned into 2 hours of pure hell.

Now, I’ve flown since I was a newborn (practically) and my first “alone” plane ride was in 1988 when I was 7 years old. Again, plane rides my entire life – no issues.

I’ve flown in clear weather, rainy weather, snow, light turbulence with spats of “drops.” It has had its moments but never like this… maybe because I’m older and more “aware…” who knows.

Anyone flying into Las Vegas knows the weather here can be kind of volatile. We have some of the strongest winds that seem to be getting worse? It seems the last few years have been windier since the time from when I moved here approximately 20 years ago.

This time, the wind shear and gusts were so bad they could NOT land. The 2 hours I mentioned? Yeah that was circling around the Las Vegas area trying to “approach” from approximately 3 different angles. We could NOT land. We’d get to a certain elevation and the plane was bouncing up and down, side to side. EXTREME drops. I had sweat pouring down my face; my cousin and I were gripping on to each other for dear life, screams coming from all around the cabin. I just wanted the plane to LAND. I didn’t care if it was on a house or in the middle of the freeway.

It was like a torture movie – the shaking and bouncing would delay for a few minutes, and you’d think it was all over, then BAM!! a huge drop.

So here I am, trying to be brave for my cousin, a first time flier, and for the first time in MY life I’m thinking we’re going to die in a fiery plane crash.

So, 2 hours go by and we finally land – the shaking did NOT subside the entire landing process – but as soon as we touch ground – it was like a Southern Baptist Tent Revival throughout the entire air plane.

And here I am still, debating whether or not to ever fly again.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Dina August 25, 2010 at 5:18 pm

I definitely understand your fear and hesitance, but consider this – how many flights have you been on where the turbulence has not been like this? Sounds like a lot! What you experienced over Las Vegas was definitely out of the ordinary, and you may not even experience it again. 🙂

Best of luck!


rerere August 25, 2010 at 9:47 pm

There’s much worse. Remember that United flight from back in July? People were being thrown around the plane and someone crashed into and cracked a window. This story sounded pretty bad, but this United flight was worse. (By the way, I wasn’t on there)


Brownstain August 26, 2010 at 3:41 am

Ladies and Gentlemen—–

Fasten your seat belts and pucker your bungholes!!!!!!!!!!!


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