One dead as Singapore Airlines 777 flies into severe turbulence

With climate change, clear turbulence has become more common than it used to be. However, we are now hearing of an incident that turned out to be fatal for one of the passengers on board.

One dead, many injured on board Singapore Airlines 777 due to turbulence

Singapore Airlines was operating a flight between London Heathrow (LHR) and Singapore (SIN), bearing flight number SQ321. The flight was supposed to depart from London Heathrow on Monday, May 20, 2024, at 10:05 PM and arrive in Singapore on Tuesday, May 21, 2024, at 6:10 PM. The flight had 211 passengers and 18 crew on board, and it was being operated by 9V-SWM, a Singapore Airlines registered Boeing 777-300ER, which was 16 years old.

The aircraft departed on time and had a largely uneventful flight for about 11 hours. However, according to FlightRadar 24 analysis, at 07:49:24Z.824 the first ADS-B frame with an increased vertical rate is received by their network. There are unexpected changes to the vertical rate for nearly one minute before returning to 0 feet per minute. Thirty people were injured, and one died of suspect heart attack.

As per an announcement put out by Singapore Airlines,

Singapore Airlines flight #SQ321, operating from London (Heathrow) to Singapore on 20 May 2024, encountered severe turbulence en-route. The aircraft diverted to Bangkok and landed at 1545hrs local time on 21 May 2024.
We can confirm that there are injuries and one fatality on board the Boeing 777-300ER. There were a total of 211 passengers and 18 crew on board.
Singapore Airlines offers its deepest condolences to the family of the deceased.

Singapore Airlines immediately diverted the aircraft to Bangkok.

a screenshot of a computer

SQ321 between London Heathrow and Singapore (diverted to Bangkok)

Unverified photos on social media showed food and other loose items strewn across the cabin floor. Unfortunately, other images are floating around depicting even more gory damage, which I’ve chosen not to put out in the public interest.

Keep your seat belt fastened during the flight.

Pilots and crew always want passengers on board to fasten their seat belts. This is because when turbulence happens, and it happens unannounced sometimes, you can become a missile that could be hurled through the cabin as the altitude changes. As long as you are buckled in, the chances of that happening are significantly reduced.

While severe turbulence causes injuries, it has been rare to see a fatality due to turbulence.

It is sufficient to say if you are seated, keep your seat belt fastened.


A Singapore Airlines Boeing 777-300ER flew into turbulence today, enroute from London to Singapore. Unfortunately, there was a loss of life on board, and many injuries due to this incident and the plane was diverted to Bangkok.

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About Ajay

Ajay Awtaney is the Founder and Editor of Live From A Lounge (LFAL), a pioneering digital platform renowned for publishing news and views about aviation, hotels, passenger experience, loyalty programs, travel trends and frequent travel tips for the Global Indian. He is considered the Indian authority on business travel, luxury travel, frequent flyer miles, loyalty credit cards and travel for Indians around the globe. Ajay is a frequent contributor and commentator on the media as well, including ET Now, BBC, CNBC TV18, NDTV, Conde Nast Traveller and many other outlets.

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