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Pilot traveling as a passenger shows how to remain calm and deal with turbulence using water bottle

As the plane shook, the off-duty pilot who was sitting at the back of the flight shared a few easy steps to stay calm during turbulence.

Pilot traveling as a passenger shows how to remain calm and deal with turbulence using water bottle
Cover Image Source: TikTok | @jimmy_nicholson

Absolutely nobody likes to experience turbulence during their journey in a plane. Mid-flight turbulence leaves our stomachs clenching and our breath short. One off-duty pilot named Jimmy Nicholson (@jimmy_nicholson) who was sitting at the end of a plane and traveling as a passenger, shared how we could better deal with turbulence. The Australian pilot was traveling with his wife when they experienced "horrible" turbulence. He filmed his rough journey and showed tricks on social media on how one could remain calm. 

Image Source: TikTok | @jimmy_nicholson
Image Source: TikTok | @jimmy_nicholson

 

The video was captioned, "Horrible turbulence on our flight today. I'm a pilot and actually fly this aircraft type (Airbus). Here’s why you have nothing to worry about." The clip received 12.5 million views, as these suggestions were much needed. "Some of the worst turbulence I've ever felt. We're at the back of the plane, so it's worse here," he explained his situation. Firstly, Nicholson reminded his viewers to remember that turbulence is "completely normal" and that their jet is "not going to fall out of the sky." 

Secondly, he performed a "water bottle trick," in which he flipped a clear plastic water bottle upside-down. The movement of the water inside gave him a clearer sense of how poor the flying conditions were. "The water isn't moving too much is it?" he reassured. Thirdly, as he held his wife's hand, Nicholson suggested that passengers open the little vents above them for extra fresh air and peep out a window. About the turbulence, he said, "It's not comfortable. It's probably some of the worst I've been in. Could be widespread storms, so they just have to pick their path of least resistance and go through it."

Representational Image Source: Pexels | Photo by Steve Johnson
Representational Image Source: Pexels | Photo by Steve Johnson

 

He went on to say that planes are designed to handle "way worse" than turbulent circumstances. He even praised the pilot for carefully navigating them through the storm. Turbulence can make passengers feel the worst, yet these disruptions are typical in flights and are often not dangerous.

Image Source: TikTok | @jimmy_nicholson
Image Source: TikTok | @jimmy_nicholson

 

In another video, where Nicholson is asked if one should be scared of turbulence, he compared aircraft turbulence to driving over potholes on the road, which happens all the time, bothers us a lot, but isn't as harmful. Similar to driving cars, he explains that pilots slow the aircraft down and don't panic. They, however, do care about their spilled coffee. Passengers can reduce their risk of harm by wearing their seat belts and following the airline's safety recommendations. According to the Federal Aviation Administration, there were not more than 34 significant passenger injuries caused by turbulence in the United States between 2009 and 2022. 

Air movement caused by atmospheric pressure, jet streams, air around mountains, cold or warm weather fronts, or thunderstorms is basically what turbulence is. It might happen unexpectedly and even when the sky looks clear. Turbulence can cause an airplane to jolt and jerk, which is what scares the travelers. People appreciated the pilot for helping them with tips to calm down. "I need an emotional support pilot next to me when I fly," joked @issameee_molleee. "This was actually VERY reassuring, to be honest... good post," added @tiktokjason

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