Passengers sue Ryanair over 20,000ft mid-air drop that 'left them injured'

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Ryanair is being sued by passengers who claim one of its flights left them injured and traumatised when it plunged 20,000ft due to loss of cabin pressure.

The flight from Milan to East Midlands Airport in April 2012 was diverted to Frankfurt in an emergency landing and saw the release of oxygen masks on the plane, Travel Mole reports.

Solicitors Irwin Mitchell said in a statement: "This terrifying descent caused physical and psychological injuries to a number of passengers.

"An interim report has been published by the German aviation authorities, and it reveals that the loss of pressure was caused by issues with the cabin pressure controllers."

According to The Guardian, after the incident Ryanair said the flight was diverted after the captain identified a pressurisation warning, deployed the oxygen masks and descended to 10,000ft as recommended.

Irwin Mitchell said the airline had admitted liability. The firm is issuing proceedings as there is a two-year limitation period for claims and more passengers are still coming forward.

On its website, Irwin Mitchell said: "The emergency drill associated with this loss of pressure requires a rapid emergency descent, which is a dramatic manoeuvre for an airliner, and can cause injuries to passengers not strapped in, damage to eardrums as the air pressure changes rapidly and psychological injury as a result of what can be a terrifying experience."

Passenger Melvin Frater told The Times: "It was snowy below us. We came down about four miles in five minutes and the pressure on our ears was tremendous... we thought 'This is it.'"

"We were falling towards the earth and until [the pilot] actually levelled up, we were just thinking: 'It's our time.'"

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