A Southwest Airlines aeroplane headed for Newark was forced to make an emergency landing on account of a broken window.
Just before 11am – two hours after take off – Flight No. 957 travelling from Chicago was diverted to Cleveland, Ohio, as reported by FlightView.
Nightmarish photographs shared on social media revealed a large hole in one of the windows of the Boeing 737-700.
The plane had been flying at 26,000 feet above Lake Erie when the diversion occurred. No injuries due to this incident have been reported.
— Chaikel (@ChaikelK) May 2, 2018
After landing safely at Cleveland’s Hopkins International Airport, the 76 passengers who had been travelling on the airplane were directed by a crew member to pick up their belongings and take a separate flight.
In a video uploaded to Twitter, the crew member can be heard telling passengers:
We’re going to walk you right onto the plane next door and we’re going to let you taken care of.
Passenger Alejandro Aguina tweeted:
On my way to NJ for work and #Southwest957 gets a window crack. Only outside crack so we’re all safe. On our way to NJ in new plane. Thanks to the @SouthwestAir crew and pilots for handling it professionally.
On my way to NJ for work and #Southwest957 gets a window crack. Only outside crack so we're all safe. On our way to NJ in new plane. Thanks to the @SouthwestAir crew and pilots for handling it professionally. pic.twitter.com/CB4s7SQtS3
— Alejandro Aguina (@Dro_AA) May 2, 2018
— EW (@ewolbrom) May 2, 2018
In a public statement, a Southwest Airlines spokesperson explained how the plane was diverted because of a ‘maintenance review of one of the multiple layers of a window pane.’
The spokesperson said:
The flight landed uneventfully in Cleveland.
The aircraft has been taken out of service for maintenance review, and our local Cleveland Employees are working diligently to accommodate the 76 customers on a new aircraft to Newark.
According to Bloomberg, this situation wasn’t considered to be an emergency by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
The window damage didn’t result in loss of cabin pressure and did not trigger deployment of oxygen masks.
— Ryan Holley (@rholley28) May 2, 2018
This frightening incident has occurred just two weeks after a female passenger was partially sucked out of an airplane window and struck by shrapnel after a Southwest Airlines Boeing 737’s engine exploded.
Mother of two Jennifer Riordan later died from her injuries, despite heroic attempts by her fellow passengers to save her; pulling her back into the plane and giving her CPR.
Southwest Airlines Captain Tammie Jo Shults and Southwest Airlines First Officer Darren Ellisor made the following statement at the time:
As Captain and First Officer of the Crew of five who worked to serve our customers aboard Flight 1380 yesterday, we all feel we were simply doing our jobs. Our hearts are heavy.
On behalf of the entire crew, we appreciate the outpouring of support from the public and our coworkers as we all reflect on one family’s profound loss.
CEO of Southwest Airlines Gary Kelly later tweeted:
It remains a somber time for the Southwest Family following the Flight 1380 accident.
Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the Riordan family. I want to extend my gratitude for the compassion and support shown by our Employees, Customers, and airline peers.
Please see below a statement from the Captain and First Officer of Flight 1380. pic.twitter.com/RjoCpucGGS
— Southwest Airlines (@SouthwestAir) April 19, 2018
What the hell is going on with Southwest Airlines and their planes???? Why do their windows keep breaking open?
— ???Jessie Woo??? (@Jessiewoo_) May 2, 2018
It remains a somber time for the Southwest Family following the Flight 1380 accident. Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the Riordan family. I want to extend my gratitude for the compassion and support shown by our Employees, Customers, and airline peers.
— Gary Kelly (@gary_kelly) April 26, 2018
Our thoughts are with the family of Jennifer Riordan.
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Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.