United Airlines continues to face a streak of unfortunate events, this time, with a flight cut short due to a “terrifying” emergency landing.
In a recent report by People, Jody Genessy, a passenger onboard United Airlines Flight 1516, recalled the incident describing it as something scary. Apparently, the Houston-bound flight had to make an emergency landing after one of its engines overheated. The Boeing 737-800, which traveled from Liberia, Costa Rica, encountered the maintenance issue as they were flying over the ocean.
“One of my plane’s engines overheated over the ocean. We about crashed in an emergency landing before the pilot quickly pulled up. So scary.”
Genessy, who also happens to be a reporter, was traveling with his wife, Heather.
“Still shaken up, but very grateful to be alive. We have four kids at home in Utah. I was scared they’d never see us again,” Genessy said.
One of my plane's engines overheated over the ocean. We about crashed in an emergency landing before the pilot quickly pulled up. So scary. pic.twitter.com/qbmlQOnYRX
— Jody Genessy (@DJJazzyJody) April 24, 2017
The shaken passenger also recalled how their United Airlines flight “circled over the ocean” as the pilot waited for the perfect timing to land the plane. Traffic was also immediately stopped at Liberia, Coasta Rica airport with fire trucks and other emergency vehicles on standby.
“They stopped traffic into the Liberia, Costa Rica airport. Fire trucks, ambulances, and emergency vehicles waited for us to land. Freaky,” Genessy shared in one of his tweets.
“We circled over the ocean for an hour to burn fuel before landing. I fly a lot. This was the most frightening thing I’ve ever experienced.”
According to reports, the United Airlines plane took off from Daniel Oduber International Airport, but landed back after about two hours. Fire Supervisor of Costa Rica, Leonel Jimenez confirmed to local media outlets that the airport was put on alert level three due to the incident.
“It comes with an emergency overheating in an engine, the units are waiting.”
Enio Cubillo, director of Civil Aviation, also revealed that the United Airlines aircraft was able to “burn enough fuel to land safely.”
“What I have is a United 737-800 aircraft, which is being maintained in Liberia’s airspace, is burning fuel to safely land again,” Cubillo said. “At the moment he is holding to burn enough fuel to land safely.”
— Noticias Repretel (@noticiarepretel) April 24, 2017
Based on FAA guidelines, modern twin-engine jets similar to United Airlines Flight 1516 can fly a hundred miles on a single engine. In addition, the FAA is required to investigate all U.S. registered airlines which encountered engine problems. It is expected that this particular United Airlines flight will be no different.
United Airlines already issued a statement addressing the said mishap. The airline giant confirmed the incident and apologized to customers affected by the issue. The company also promised to provide compensation for the inconvenience. However, United Airlines has yet to confirm the cause of the incident but revealed that their “maintenance team is reviewing” it.
“Flight 1516, traveling from Liberia, Costa Rica to Houston, returned to Liberia due to a maintenance issue. The plane landed safely and a new aircraft is being sent to take customers to Houston tomorrow. We apologize to all customers on board for their experience and will be providing compensation for the inconvenience.”
Meanwhile, the pilot who landed United Airlines Flight 1516 safely is now being applauded for his skills and quick thinking. According to Genessy, the pilot skillfully landed the plane with one engine and did not tell the passengers to avoid panic.
“The pilot was flying us in to land with one engine (he didn’t tell us this). Just as we were about to touch, a wind sheer hit the plane,” Genessy recalled. “The plane tilted to the right and the wing almost hit the runway, which would’ve been awful. The pilot corrected the plane and we almost went sideways, but he pulled up just in time.”
[Featured Image by Scott Olson/Getty Images]