Travel insurance ‘will likely’ cover injuries sustained in the Singapore Airlines incident, ABI says

May 22, 2024 - 7:54 PM
The interior of Singapore Airline flight SQ321 is pictured after an emergency landing at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi International Airport, in Bangkok, Thailand May 21, 2024. (Obtained by Reuters/Handout via Reuters)

Travel insurance policies will likely” cover injuries sustained by aircraft turbulence, but policies may varythe Association Of British Insurers said following the Singapore Airlines SIAL.SI incident on Tuesday.

One passenger died of a suspected heart attack, and 30 were injured after a Singapore Airlines flight hit severe turbulence on Tuesday, flinging passengers and crew around the cabin and forcing the plane to land in Bangkok, officials and the airline said.

The primary purpose of travel insurance is to cover the costs of emergency medical treatments or repatriation should the worst happen, the ABI said.

Most travel insurance policies also cover medical repatriation, where necessary, or an alternative flight home if passengers are fit and able.

“If you’re injured because of turbulence on a flight, as with other emergency medical needs, your travel insurance will likely apply in the usual way. Policies may vary, so it’s important to check the details of what you’re covered for …” a spokesperson for ABI said on Wednesday.

Twenty people onboard the flight are currently under treatment in intensive care facilities, Bangkok’s Samitivej Hospital said in a statement on Wednesday.

The flight from London and bound for Singapore fell into an air pocket while cabin crew were serving breakfast before it encountered turbulence, prompting the pilots to request an emergency landing, Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport general manager Kittipong Kittikachorn told a press conference.

—Reporting by Sinead Cruise in London and Noor Zainab Hussain in Bengaluru; Editing by Tasim Zahid