There was panic on board United Flight 5869 after a short flight from Aspen to Denver ended with the plane bursting into flames on the runway. The plane left Aspen at 1:31 p.m. on Sunday and landed in Denver less than an hour later when the plane erupted in fire.
Flames could be seen shooting out of the left engine and spilling onto the tarmac as passengers were evacuated right on the spot by the captain and flight crew. According to the Daily Mail, “the plane was engulfed in flames” after it landed at Denver International Airport.
Panic set in as passengers scrambled to get out of the plane when flames became visible shooting out of one of its engines. According to reports from people who were on the flight, the passengers hit the tarmac and ran away from the flaming aircraft as help arrived. The Bombardier CRJ-701 plane carried 59 passengers on this flight, which is operated by a partner of United Airlines, SkyWest.
Thanks to the cell phone technology of modern times, cameras are almost always just a few feet away from any news-worthy event. Passengers on board United Flight 5869 had their cell phone cameras clicking and their pictures captured the evacuation event as flames shot out from the plane and onto the tarmac.
These photos were posted online just minutes after the evacuation occurred. Social media has brought real-time reporting to all corners of the planet, and people are capturing images that may have been missed decades ago. With a camera in just about everyone’s pocket today, events such as this fire are captured in real-time.
As you can see in the tweeted photo above, a passenger was running away from the plane after just getting off the aircraft. Again, with the technology today, the passengers were tweeting about the fire that erupted on Flight 5869 before the emergency crews could dose the flames.
According to a United Airlines spokesperson, the plane “experienced engine issues” after it had landed on the Denver runway. The fire on Flight 5869 was announced to the public on Twitter by United Airlines. They also reported that the passengers on the flight were safely evacuated with no injuries reported.
The passengers were thankful to the captain and the crew for making sure everyone got out of the plane safely, which is what a few posts on the social media sites conveyed. Another passenger stood and watched the flames spilling onto the runway and although thankful to be safe, she was concerned about her belongings on the plane.
Rabia Chaudry wrote on Twitter, “Everyone is safe though shook. All our stuff is on the plane. Waiting for diaper bag, stroller, ID, all my personal items.”
The Denver Airport put out a tweet of their own stating that the airport will remain open while the investigation into the SkyWest fire continues. They also passed along in that tweet that all other airport operations will be business as usual.
[Featured Image by David Zalubowski/AP Images]