LONG BEACH (CBSLA.com) — Several people were injured Thursday after a Jet Blue aircraft made an emergency landing at Long Beach Airport.
KNX 1070’s Megan Goldsby reports Flight 1416 returned to the airport at 9:29 a.m., 25 minutes after it took off for Austin.
“On September 18, the flight crew aboard flight 1416 reported an issue with the number two engine and returned to Long Beach Airport,” Jet Blue officials said in a statement.
The pilots had received a warning signal that the engine was overheating, according to Jake Heflin of the Long Beach Fire Department.
“They proceeded to have some smoke inside the cabin,” he said. “The pilots then deployed both extinguishing agents.”
Once the plane landed, slides were deployed for the 142 passengers and five crew members who were on board.
“There were four patients that were treated and evaluated by Long Beach Fire Department paramedics on scene of the incident itself, one of those patients complained of shortness of breath and was transported to a local area hospital,” Helfin said.
The other three patients were evaluated and treated on scene.
KCAL9’s Dave Lopez spoke with passengers who feared for their lives while during the emergency landing.
“There was a loud boom and then immediately the cabin filled with smoke,” said Jarrod West. “The masks didn’t drop at first.”
According to passengers, once the plane began its descent to land, the flight attendants were yelling orders to brace for landing.
“The flight attendants were yelling ‘brace, brace’ and they kept repeating it and repeating it on the top of their lungs,” West said.
Passenger Jonathon Hubbard sat in the emergency row on board. He said he immediately threw the emergency exit door open once the plane came to a halt on the ground.
“Smoke engulfed the cabin where you couldn’t see the person next to you,” said Hubbard. “It was that bad. For the most part, people stayed calm.
Los Angeles resident Cynthian Manley said the experience was perhaps the most frightening during the first few minutes when passengers heard a loud boom, the cabin began to fill with smoke, and the oxygen masks initially failed to drop down.
“Everybody’s freaking out because the smoke is so thick, and it’s very acidic smoke,” said Manley. “I was breathing through my pillow.”
“Twilight” actor Jackson Rathbone was also on board with his family and live tweeted during the incident.
Long Beach Airport was reopened shortly before 11:30 a.m.
For passengers still wanting to travel to Texas, Jet Blue accommodated with alternate flight arrangements.