A Southwest Airlines flight was forced to make an emergency landing after a catastrophic mid-air accident caused shrapnel to fly into a window, seriously injuring a passenger, CNN is reporting.
Flight 1380, en route from New York City’s LaGuardia airport and bound for Dallas, suffered the emergency over southeastern Pennsylvania, according to flight-tracking site Flightware. Maps of the aircraft’s path show it making a sudden turn towards Philadelphia not long after takeoff.
What, exactly, happened remains unclear as of this writing, but according to Buzzfeed News, one of the aircraft’s engines failed. So dramatically did the engine fail that shrapnel hit a window, injuring a passenger in the process. The passenger’s injury has been described as “serious,” though medical personnel on board the aircraft were able to provide first aid.
Passenger Marty Martinez, who was one of 143 passengers and five crew aboard the aircraft, said there was “blood everywhere.”
“We were probably going down for 10 to 15 minutes. And of course everyone is freaking out, everyone is crying. It was the scariest experience.”
One passenger, a woman, was in danger of being sucked out of the plane but was pulled to safety by the other passengers.
After the emergency, the plane made a sudden drop, but the captain was able to regain control of the vehicle and put it on the ground. On the ground, the runway was crowded with emergency vehicles. According to a statement from Philadelphia International Airport, the plane landed safely.
Passengers disembarked the aircraft via “air stairs” — that is, emergency steps built into the aircraft. One injured passenger was immediately taken to a hospital.
— Kristopher Johnson (@EMMS_MrJohnson) April 17, 2018
Passenger Kristopher Johnson said that the crew handled the emergency as best as could be expected.
“The crew did a great job.”
Passengers on board the flight have been sharing dramatic photos and video of the event.
In a lengthy Facebook post, Martinez shared photos of the damaged engine, a damaged window, oxygen masks dropped from the ceiling, and the aftermath once the plane was on the ground.
In a statement, Southwest Airlines said that it is aware of the event but is in the process of “gathering information” before revealing any more details.
Meanwhile, the National Transportation and Safety Board (NTSB) said in a tweet that a team would be sent to Philadelphia to investigate the incident. Further, Chairman Robert Sumwalt will be holding a “short briefing” at 3 p.m. Eastern Time today.
This is a developing story. The Inquisitr will provide more information about this event as it becomes available.
Update: At 3:26 p.m. Eastern Time, The New York Post reported that the injured passenger has died. It is not clear if it was the same woman who was nearly sucked out of the aircraft. In fact, as of this writing nothing has been revealed about the passenger – sex, age, or otherwise. This story continues to develop.