Southwest Airlines Plane Turns Back After Pilot Spots Problem

Southwest Airlines flight 2869 taking off from Denver to Los Angeles had to turn back Sunday evening, shortly after takeoff, when the pilot noticed a mechanical problem, most likely a blown tire. After the Southwest plane safely landed at 5:58 p.m., firefighters helped passengers exit the plane and get safely to nearby buses.

The Denver International Airport spokesperson, Heath Montegomery, told the Denver Post as follows.

“They did land safely and there were no reports of any injuries.”

Passengers on the Southwest flight said that a tire had blown upon takeoff of the plane. Passengers also reported that the aircraft made a rough landing and dumped some fuel before returning to DIA.

Brad Hawkins, a Southwest Airlines spokesperson, told Bidness Etc as follows.

“Early indications are it appears to be a blown tire. Our maintenance teams will have the first look and final say.”

This is the second consecutive night that Southwest Airlines had a problem with a flight at DIA. On Saturday night, a Southwest flight 3456 from Baltimore to Denver stopped short of the gate and was taken to a remote spot on the airport’s property after it landed, according to the Denver Channel. Passengers of the Southwest flight were guided to a bus and shuttled to the concourse as Denver police, TSA, and FBI swarmed the Southwest plane after a possible security threat. After they investigated the Southwest Airlines flight, police deemed the threat not credible.

The FBI reported that none of the passengers were arrested or detained during the investigation. The original threat came in from the aircraft at 5:15 p.m., and the Southwest flight later landed at 6:36 p.m.

Amy Sanders, a spokeswoman for the FBI, told the Denver Post as follows.

“The threat was deemed non-credible at this time.”

Southwest Airlines is known for its reasonable prices to travel across the United States and their deals for one-way tickets that can cost as low as $70 per flight. Who knows if these two incidents will effect Southwest Airlines, after over 400 passengers were effected at the Denver Airport.

Have you ever traveled via Southwest Airlines? Did you enjoy the flight or were the cheap prices not worth the hassle? Have you ever been on a plane that had an issue while taking off or landing?

[Photo by Scott Olson / Getty Images]