A Southwest Airlines flight bound for Sacramento was forced to make an emergency landing at a military base in Yuma, Arizona on Friday night, after a three-foot hole opened in the plane's fuselage. No one was seriously hurt, although reportedly a passenger and flight attendant passed out.
After the hole opened, the plane lost cabin pressure, causing crew and passengers to fear for their lives. "We were in row 16 and my husband and I could see blue sky ... the wiring, the cabling," Debbie Downey told CNN. "It actually was terrifying." The airline is currently working with National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration to determine the cause of the incident.
This isn't the first time this has happened to Southwest. In July 2009, a flight bound for Baltimore was forced to make an emergency landing in West Virginia because of a hole in it's fuselage. Just months earlier the company had to pay $7.5 million because they had missed required safety inspections.
The airline announced this afternoon that they will ground 81 planes for immediate inspection.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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