A passenger on a business jet died after a flight from New Hampshire to Virginia encountered severe turbulence and had to make an emergency landing, officials said.
Three passengers and two crew members were aboard a Bombardier Challenger 300 aircraft from Keene, New Hampshire, to Leesburg, Virginia, on March 3 when it encountered turbulence, according to NBC Connecticut.
The pilot diverted the private jet from its original route to make an emergency landing at Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, Connecticut, the NTSB said.
A person on board was taken to a local hospital with a medical emergency and later died, the NTSB told NBC Connecticut. The person's identity has not been released, and no additional details were given by the NTSB about what caused the fatal injury.
"It’s not rare to have serious injuries, broken bones, people being jostled about," NBC News aviation analyst Jeff Guzzetti said on TODAY March 6. "But to have someone actually die means that something traumatic really must have happened.”
The jet is owned by Missouri-based company Conexon, which confirmed to NBC News in an email that its aircraft was involved in the emergency landing. A company spokesperson said the person who died was not a Conexon employee.
Bombardier, the Canadian maker of the aircraft, did not comment on the potential cause of the accident due to an ongoing investigation, the company said in a statement.
"Bombardier is deeply saddened by this tragic event," the company said.
The company added that its Challenger 300 fleet and other Bombardier business jets continue to operate without any issues.
"We stand behind our aircraft, which are designed to be robust and reliable in accordance with Transport Canada and all international airworthiness standards," Bombardier said in its statement.
The NTSB and Federal Aviation Administration are investigating the incident.
The death came days after a Lufthansa flight from Texas to Germany was diverted to Dulles International Airport outside Washington, D.C., on March 1 due to significant turbulence that sent seven passengers to the hospital.
Model and designer Camila Alves McConaughey was traveling on the flight with her husband, actor Matthew McConaughey. She detailed the harrowing aftermath from the turbulence, writing on Instagram that the plane dropped almost 4,000 feet.
From 2009 to 2021, a total of 146 people were injured on flights that experienced severe turbulence, according to the FAA.
Aviation experts say that in order to protect yourself in case of turbulence on a flight, make sure your seatbelt is fastened tight. Also, secure your belongings so that they don’t go flying around the cabin and potentially injure you or others.
The severe turbulence on the two flights is part of a series of recent aviation incidents.
A Southwest Airlines flight had to make an emergency landing in Cuba on March 5 after a bird strike caused engine trouble and resulted in smoke billowing in the cabin.
That same day, one person died when a small, single-engine plane crashed in a neighborhood in Long Island, New York, officials said.