SIA Stewardess Shares Cabin Crew’s Plight & Highlights Importance Of Insurance

Always conducting themselves professionally, the job of an airline cabin crew often appears rosy on the outside.

But an online post by a former Singapore Airlines (SIA) stewardess may show otherwise. On Friday (19 Jun), Facebook user Ms Ng shared the challenges she went through after sustaining an injury at work.

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Writing her experience in extensive detail, she sheds light on the true nature of her job that many may not know about.

SIA stewardess continued working despite injury

Her ordeal started when she was helping to put passengers’ bags in the overhead compartment, and suddenly got her right hand trapped under one of them.

The force was allegedly so strong that she was “pulled upwards and inwards”, with her body dangling slightly from above.

She later somehow managed to free herself, and did a cold compress before continuing with meal service, as she would have felt bad if she sat down while her colleagues worked.

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She only visited a doctor at the hospital after landing in Singapore, but she claimed he dismissed her tale.

He then gave her “2 big steroid jabs” and 2 months of medical leave, after which she felt better and returned to work.

Sadly, his failure to record her account meant that SIA could only recognise her injuries as a result of a minor work accident, for which they compensated her roughly $6,000.

Partially paralysed on later flight after injury

Little did she know that the incident would haunt her on a later flight to Paris.

She reportedly experienced paralysis to a quarter of her body, which landed her in the Accident & Emergency (A & E) department.

Thankfully, she regained movement while waiting for medical attention, and was only hospitalised after insisting on getting further checks.

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The doctor eventually diagnosed her with a “large cervical slipped disk”, which she was sure was a result of the first accident.

But the inability to concretely link the 2 together meant that she couldn’t seek compensation from SIA.

Unable to continue working, she decided to resign from her job.

Pain returned during ‘Circuit Breaker’

After securing a new job at a General Practitioner’s (GP) clinic, she resorted to buying painkillers regularly to cope with the aches.

This aroused the doctor’s suspicions, and so he examined her, only to find a muscle tear that required multiple surgeries.

Side effects included painful muscle spasms, but she was well on her road to recovery.

Unfortunately, the pain returned over the recent ‘Circuit Breaker’ (CB) period as her regular physiotherapy sessions had to pause.

As a consequence, the former stewardess now has to undergo disc replacement.

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She explains that she has lost parts of her shoulder muscles entirely, leaving “just skin and bones”.

Incidents highlight importance of insurance

By now, you’d imagine that her medical bills must have accumulated to quite a large amount. While SIA has helped with coverage, Ms Ng emphasises the need for insurance, which helped her further.

She specifically thanks AIA for making her claims process easy, and even calling to check on her progress personally.

Challenges aside, she wishes to clarify that she very much enjoyed her time at SIA, and was thankful for it, as well as the colleagues whom she had worked with.

Be kinder towards cabin crew

What she hopes by sharing her story is for the public to be kinder and more considerate towards cabin crew, as their jobs can be difficult too.

We shouldn’t think the superficial glamour that she says many people associate the job with is for real, and take them for granted.

Perhaps this applies to all service staff across various jobs too. Let’s do our best to show some compassion, and appreciate their efforts to make our customer experience smooth and convenient.

Featured image for illustration purposes only, adapted from glassdoor.