Previous Flight of Lion Air Described as “Roller Coaster” Ride

The flight just before Flight JT610 on Lion Air was described as a “roller coaster” that made some people sick. The same aircraft that crashed yesterday, probably killing all onboard, experienced some type of problem on the flight before.

That flight, JT43, took place on Sunday evening. It is reported that the pilots of that flight encountered “unreliable airspeed indications.” One passenger said the plane dropped suddenly several times during that flight. Another passenger recounted that the aircraft returned to the gate prior to departing. The aircraft was reportedly experiencing an unusual engine sound. After 30 minutes of waiting onboard without air conditioning, some people began to feel ill and they were eventually allowed to get off the aircraft. Later, they were reboarded.

On that previous flight, the following was recounted by a passenger: “About three to eight minutes after it took off, I felt like the plane was losing power and unable to rise. That happened several times,” he said. “We felt like in a roller coaster. Some passengers began to panic and vomit.”

The account matches data from flight-trackers. Speed, altitude and direction were not stabilized in the minutes after the jet took off. This is similar to data from the crash flight.

Haryo Satmiko, Indonesia National Transport Safety Committee (NTSC) deputy chief, confirmed earlier today that airspeed readings were reportedly erratic during Sunday’s flight.

The NTSB is sending multiple investigators to the site.