Last Thursday, January 23, Avianca flight AV693 flying from San José, Costa Rica to Bogotá, Colombia had to land in Panamá City’s Tocumen International Airport after experiencing severe turbulence that sent 3 crew and 1 passenger to the hospital, and left the plane damaged.
The Airbus A319 was carrying 108 passengers and 5 crew when it landed in Panamá at 4:31 am local time. Most uninjured passengers continued on flight AV59 at 9:29am the same morning.
Based on photos shared on social media, there was considerable interior damage, and according to Avianca’s statement, “the captain identified an alert in one of the systems” requiring the immediate termination of the flight and landing in Panamá.
?? Avianca flight AV693 from San Jose to Bogota suffered strong turbulences.
▫️The crew decided to diverted to Panama City.
▫️There were 108 pax and 5 crew members on board, 4 people transferred to the hospital.
? Telediario pic.twitter.com/lVlTZIvSvr
— air plus news (english) (@airplusnews_EN) January 24, 2020
Other shared data shows the plane fell 2,400 feet in 19 seconds, equivalent to 7,578 feet per minute.
Flight Avianca AV693, diverted to Panamá because a heavy turbulence, lose 2400 feet from 08:45:34 to 08:45:53, so i guess that were the most scary 19 seconds of the life of its passengers. That’s a descent rate of 7.578 ft/m!
— José Darío Trigos Huertas (@Josedatrigos) January 23, 2020