Published: Thu, February 15, 2018
Economy | By Shawn Conner

Southwest flight forced to evacuate due to smoke in the aircraft

Southwest flight forced to evacuate due to smoke in the aircraft

Forbes notes that the same thing happened in December, when Southwest canceled at least 90 flights from Midway due to de-icing issues.

Emergency slides were deployed and all 139 passengers and five crew members exited the plane safely.

The plane carrying Southwest Airlines flight #2123 had a fire break out before takeoff at John Wayne Airport in Santa Ana on February 12, 2018.

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Several minor injuries were reported but no one had to be transported to the hospital.

"We have paused our service for the remainder of the day for the safety of our customers and crews", Southwest said in a statement.

Southwest Airlines Co.'s cancellation of 250 flights at Midway Airport Feb. 11 was the third time in two months that a shortage of de-icing fluid has complicated the carrier's Chicago operations. Orange County fire officials said the decision to evacuate the aircraft was made out of an abundance of caution. The incident was first reported around 7:30 p.m.

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The blaze Monday evening was in the airliner's auxiliary power unit and was extinguished by the plane's fire suppression system, according to Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer.

The airline blamed freezing conditions at the airport for slowing down crews in charge of de-icing the planes, the statement said.

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