NTSB Identification: IAD01LA102.
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Accident occurred Thursday, August 30, 2001 in Richmond, VA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/13/2003
Aircraft: Embraer ERJ-135ER, registration: N25504
Injuries: 1 Serious,28 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The airplane was on autopilot in instrument meteorological conditions, descending through 17,000 feet at 280 knots. It was being operated in an area of convective activity, with cells about 20 nautical miles on either side of the flight path. There were no radar echoes in the path of flight. The captain notified the flight attendant that the "ride may be bumpy," and had her sit down. The seat belt sign was illuminated, and a general announcement about potential turbulence was made. Approximately 10 minutes after the announcement, severe turbulence was encountered. The flight attendant, who had gotten up after thinking the area of turbulence had passed, was then seriously injured. There was no specific guidance in the company's flight operations manual about seating cabin crewmembers in anticipation of turbulence. As a result of the investigation, and after coordination with the senior manager of flight safety for the airline, guidance was published that included a requirement that cabin crewmembers remain seated until advised by the captain.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:

Inadequate company procedures/directives, which resulted in the flight attendant leaving her seat prematurely, while the airplane was still in an area of turbulence.

Full narrative available

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