SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — A fire on a Southwest Airlines plane forced passengers to evacuate before takeoff at a Southern California airport.
Officials from John Wayne Airport say the crew of the Boeing 737 decided that the 139 passengers should evacuate Monday night, using the aircraft’s emergency slides. They were bound for San Jose.
Southwest Airlines said the captain of Flight 2123 received indication by ground personnel of a possible fire prior to leaving the airport.
Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer says the blaze was in the airliner’s auxiliary power unit and was extinguished with the plane’s fire suppression system.
The 139 passengers and five crew members all departed the air craft via the slides, according to Southwest Airlines.
The incident forced a partial shutdown of the airport’s taxiway, but airport operations are back to normal, airport officials said.
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