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New partnership sets sights on reducing turbulence injuries

FlightA new partnership could drastically reduce the number of turbulence injuries suffered by air passengers.

In-flight connectivity provider Gogo has joined forces with The Weather Company, owned by IBM, to develop a new system that will allow for the delivery of real-time turbulence reports and alerts to be directly sent to pilots.

As it stands, pilots and other flight operations personnel receive verbal reports which are coded, with a small amount of information on flight conditions, known as PIREPS – this information was not up-to-date causing greater potential of risk for passengers and crew.

Gogo will now connect aircraft with The Weather Company’s patented ‘Turbulence Auto Pirep System’ (TAPS), which features a turbulence-detection algorithm – giving pilots the chance to receive live turbulence reports through The Weather Company’s apps.

By using Gogo’s expanded fleet of aircraft, The Weather Company can quickly share real-time turbulence data directly with pilots and dispatchers, drastically improving passenger and crew safety, according to Mark Gildersleeve, President of Business Solutions at The Weather Company.

The partnership is an example of the ‘Internet of Things’ in action, as huge collections of data are used to provide insight to guide flights that will be travelling through impacted air space.

Turbulence incidents cost airlines $100 million (c. £68 million), mainly due to injuries to crew and passengers, operational inefficiencies, unscheduled maintenance and revenue lost while planes are out of service.

Studies have shown that turbulence is the main cause of non-fatal injuries within the commercial airline industry. However, since The Weather Company launched its solution, the company claims that some customers have seen a 50% reduction in incidents related to turbulence.

If you’re thinking of travelling abroad this year, be sure to organise your European travel insurance in advance.

Date Created: 20 June 2016

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