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CORRECTED: 4TH LD: 7 injured as Turkish Airlines plane hit by turbulence.

CHIBA, Japan, Aug. 8 Kyodo

A Turkish Airlines plane flying from Istanbul was hit by turbulence Tuesday morning, injuring two cabin crew members and five passengers as it was approaching Narita airport, its destination, according to airport and police officials.

The Airbus A340-300 aircraft carrying 191 passengers was hit by the turbulence at around 10:20 a.m. over Niigata and Ibaraki prefectures, and it landed in Narita, east of Tokyo, about 30 minutes later, the authorities said.

Of the seven injured, three women were taken to hospital. A crew member broke some ribs. The remaining seven sustained light injuries, according to the police.

The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport has dispatched two Aircraft and Railway Accidents Investigation Commission investigators to probe the accident. The aircraft departed for Istanbul in the afternoon after an inspection found no abnormalities, according to the airport officials.

A local weather observatory said a typhoon was approaching and a dense rain cloud was observed in the morning over the southern part of the Boso Peninsula, near Narita. An upward current could have been generated inside the cloud, it said.

Hidemi Notohara, a 31-year-old passenger, said, ''We were shaken horizontally just after an announcement that we would be arriving in Narita in 30 minutes, and the plane descended. I have never felt this scared. We were lucky the seatbelt sign was on, otherwise it could have been worse.''
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Publication:Japan Transportation Scan
Geographic Code:9JAPA
Date:Aug 14, 2006
Words:233
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