Fourteen people were injured after a plane plunged hundreds of metres downwards for 15 seconds and left terrified passengers fearing they would die.
The plane, operated by Spanish charter airline Evelop, ran into severe turbulence as it travelled from Mauritius to Madrid.
The A330-343 Airbus aircraft landed safely at its original destination in Madrid’s Barajas airport on Tuesday night.
Passengers say the jet suffered a 15-second episode of clear-air turbulence that made the aircraft plummet a few hundred metres in the sky over Ethiopia, a company official who declined to be identified said.
Three crew members were all among those injured, all of who were only slightly hurt.
The company said the 11 passengers had ignored the seat belt warning activated before the plane flew into the turbulence zone.
El Mundo newspaper quoted one passenger as saying the plunge had sent various people “flying towards the ceiling and floating in the air, like you see in the movies”.
“We all thought we were going to die,” he told El Mundo, adding that upon the safe landing the passengers applauded the crew and hugged each other.
Mirror Online has approached Evelop for comment.
Last month, 35 passengers were left with head and neck injuries after smashing against the roof of a plane during severe turbulence .
The incident happened on Air Canada flight 33 as it flew over the Pacific Ocean during a service from Vancouver to Sydney on Thursday.
The aircraft was forced to make an emergency landing at Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in Honolulu after encountering sudden “clear air” turbulence.
Pilots on the Boeing 777 aircraft decided to turn back after flying through the known turbulence hotspot.