'Just "Plane' Frustrating: United Passengers Stranded In Spokane - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

'Just "Plane' Frustrating: United Passengers Stranded In Spokane

SPOKANE, Wash. - The long ordeal for 157 United Airlines passengers who were stranded overnight at Spokane International Airport appears to be winding down.      

The passengers were scheduled to depart Spokane at 11:30 a.m. Thursday to complete their interrupted trip from Chicago to Portland but the arrival of an incoming plane (United flt. 9943 from Portland) that was to have taken the passengers to Portland was delayed.  

There was no immediate word on why the incoming flight from Portland was delayed, but SIA spokesman Todd Woodard told KHQ anchor Dave Cotton on KHQ.com's Noon NewsBreak that the plane was en route from Portland.      

Woodard told KHQ that on Wednesday night United Airlines flight 959 - set to arrive in Portland at 11:19 p.m. - made an unscheduled stop in Spokane due to a hydraulic fluid leak, leaving the 157 passengers to spend the night in Spokane. All passengers were provided lodging near Spokane Int'l.    

Flight 959 first landed in Spokane around 10:30 p.m. to refuel, according to Woodard.

The Boeing 757 then departed at 11 p.m., and shortly after takeoff the pilot detected the leak, Woodard said. The plane returned to the Spokane at 11:30 p.m., with an emergency response on the ground requested by the pilot as a precaution.

The passengers got off the plane as United crews inspected the leak and arranged for another flight. A second plane was to be flown in from San Francisco to complete the trip around 3:45 a.m., but that was canceled, said Woodard. He did not specify why it was canceled.

We have a handy link to all departure and arrival information at Spokane International here on  KHQ.com.