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Engine trouble cited as Southwest flight lands in Philadelphia

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PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) – A Dallas-bound Southwest Airlines Co (LUV.N) with 143 passengers and five crew members on board made an emergency landing on Tuesday at Philadelphia International Airport after suffering engine failure, according to the airline and media reports.

Live TV images showed that most of the outer casing around the left engine of the Boeing Co (BA.N) 737-700 had ripped away and a window near the engine on the plane’s left side was missing.

One passenger was injured, local media reports said.

Southwest said the aircraft, flight 1380, was bound for Dallas Love Field in Texas from New York’s LaGuardia airport before it diverted to Philadelphia. It did not immediately provide an explanation for the diversion.

“We are in the process of transporting customers and crew into the terminal,” Southwest said in a statement.

A passenger on the flight described feeling the aircraft drop.

“All of a sudden, we heard this loud bang, rattling, it felt like one of the engines went out. The oxygen masks dropped,” the passenger, Kristopher Johnson told CNN. “It just shredded the left-side engine completely … it was scary.”

Todd Baur, who identified himself as the father of a passenger from the plane, told Philadelphia’s NBC-10 that a female passenger was injured when she was partially sucked into a window near the afflicted engine.

The aircraft’s maker, Boeing, said on Twitter that it was aware of the incident and was “gathering more information.”

The plane’s engines are made by CFM International, a French-U.S. venture co-owned by Safran (SAF.PA) and General Electric (GE.N), which was not immediately available for comment.

A spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration declined to comment.

Reporting by Peter Szekely; Additional reporting by Tim Hepher in Paris; Editing by Scott Malone and Bernadette Baum



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