Southwest Pilot To Passengers: 'We're Going Down' - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Southwest Pilot To Passengers: 'We're Going Down'

YAHOO.COM - The pilot of a Southwest Airlines flight gave passengers a scare Tuesday when he announced over the loudspeaker that the plane was "going down."

"He said, 'We're going down,'" Shelley Wills, one of the passengers on the Boeing 737 en route from Tampa, Fla., to Raleigh-Durham International Airport, told ABC's affiliate there. "And everyone is looking around like, 'Is this a joke? Is he serious?' And then you felt the nosedive."

"At first it sounded like someone was coming over the PA to talk," Grace Stroud, another passenger, told CNN. "Then it sounded like shots through the cabin, twice, back to back. Seconds later, the panicked captain said, 'We're in trouble, we're going down.'"

Wills said she tried to console a woman seated next to her who was clutching her chest. "I'm thinking, 'Oh my God, she's going to scare herself into a heart attack,'" Wills said.

She said she even texted her daughter goodbye. "[The text] says, 'I love you Alyssa. My plane is going down.' I thought I was going to die, and that's what everyone on that plane thought. That we were all going to die, just by one word of the captain. I just think they could have handled it a little differently."

In an email to Stroud obtained by CNN, Southwest said the pilot "inadvertently activated the PA system."

A Southwest spokeswoman confirmed there was an emergency.

"Flight 3426 experienced a maintenance alert as they were on descent into RDU," Southwest said in a statement. "The captain declared an emergency and descended the aircraft to 25,000 feet where the alert was resolved. Throughout the remainder of the descent the flight was normal, landed uneventfully, and was not met by emergency vehicles."

The FAA said it is investigating.

It's not the first time Southwest Airlines has had a scare at Raleigh-Durham. In September, a Southwest flight bound for Chicago struck a bird, damaging an engine. The pilot alerted the passengers, turned the plane around and landed safely at the airport to the delight of the 124 people on board.

"Everyone clapped," Shelly Tranchita, one of them, told WRAL-TV. "It was an uproar. It was a beautiful thing. We landed and were safe and it was a huge relief."

"I high-fived the guy next to me over his crying girlfriend," George Shackleton, another passenger, added.

Last month, Southwest fired a veteran pilot whose nosedive landing at New York's LaGuardia Airport in July injured 16 people. According to the National Transportation Safety Board, the pilot took control from the first officer just before the Boeing 737 hit the runway.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Update: Deputies identify woman seen with man arrested for gas station rape

    Update: Deputies identify woman seen with man arrested for gas station rape

    Friday, January 19 2018 2:31 AM EST2018-01-19 07:31:52 GMT

    SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. - Spokane Valley police and deputies continue to investigate the beating and sexual assault of a woman in a Spokane Valley gas station near Trent and Vista over the weekend. Investigators say responding deputies detained and arrested registered sex offender Michael Rush as he was seen leaving the bathroom, where a woman in her 40s was found beaten and strangled.

    >>

    SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. - Spokane Valley police and deputies continue to investigate the beating and sexual assault of a woman in a Spokane Valley gas station near Trent and Vista over the weekend. Investigators say responding deputies detained and arrested registered sex offender Michael Rush as he was seen leaving the bathroom, where a woman in her 40s was found beaten and strangled.

    >>
  • South Spokane shooting victim left blind, says he wants justice

    South Spokane shooting victim left blind, says he wants justice

    Thursday, January 18 2018 9:04 PM EST2018-01-19 02:04:36 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - It was a crime that sent shock waves from the South Hill all over Spokane. Two people shot just feet from their apartments. The manhunt for their killer lasted days. The 64-year-old survivor of that ambush and his family reached out to KHQ's Hayley Guenthner to share his story. Mike Troy was shot in the face but miraculously lived. His brother Gene said it's been an agonizing month. "He's never harmed anyone," Gene said. 

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - It was a crime that sent shock waves from the South Hill all over Spokane. Two people shot just feet from their apartments. The manhunt for their killer lasted days. The 64-year-old survivor of that ambush and his family reached out to KHQ's Hayley Guenthner to share his story. Mike Troy was shot in the face but miraculously lived. His brother Gene said it's been an agonizing month. "He's never harmed anyone," Gene said. 

    >>
  • WATCH: Oregon fisherman sues after insane boat crash caught on camera

    WATCH: Oregon fisherman sues after insane boat crash caught on camera

    Wednesday, January 17 2018 6:12 PM EST2018-01-17 23:12:55 GMT

    CLATSOP COUNTY, Ore. - A salmon fisherman who abandoned ship by leaping into the Columbia river last summer, right before another boat crashed into his, is suing the other boat driver for $372,000. The Oregonian reports that the Clatsop County sheriff's office accused Marlin Lee Larson of several crimes after the boater told investigators he couldn't see where he was driving because the dash of his boat was blocking his view when he was sitting down.

    >>

    CLATSOP COUNTY, Ore. - A salmon fisherman who abandoned ship by leaping into the Columbia river last summer, right before another boat crashed into his, is suing the other boat driver for $372,000. The Oregonian reports that the Clatsop County sheriff's office accused Marlin Lee Larson of several crimes after the boater told investigators he couldn't see where he was driving because the dash of his boat was blocking his view when he was sitting down.

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • Truck slams into parked train near Reardan

    Truck slams into parked train near Reardan

    Friday, January 19 2018 10:11 AM EST2018-01-19 15:11:16 GMT

    REARDAN, Wash. - Two people have been transported to the hospital after a truck slammed into a parked train near Reardan, WA. The crash happened around 5:15am Friday in the 700 block of N. Coulee Hite. A Ford F-250 pickup truck pulling a boat slammed into the parked train. Authorities say dense fog and slick roads could have played a factor in this crash.

    >>

    REARDAN, Wash. - Two people have been transported to the hospital after a truck slammed into a parked train near Reardan, WA. The crash happened around 5:15am Friday in the 700 block of N. Coulee Hite. A Ford F-250 pickup truck pulling a boat slammed into the parked train. Authorities say dense fog and slick roads could have played a factor in this crash.

    >>
  • City of Spokane looks to install more speed cameras in school zones

    City of Spokane looks to install more speed cameras in school zones

    Friday, January 19 2018 9:59 AM EST2018-01-19 14:59:20 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - The City of Spokane says speed cameras in school zones have worked so well that they are looking to add more. Right now there are only two speed cameras in school zones, but the city wants to double that number to four. The current cameras are installed at Longfellow and Finch Elementary schools. The new cameras will target two schools in the north hills area,  Ridgeview and Willard elementary.

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - The City of Spokane says speed cameras in school zones have worked so well that they are looking to add more. Right now there are only two speed cameras in school zones, but the city wants to double that number to four. The current cameras are installed at Longfellow and Finch Elementary schools. The new cameras will target two schools in the north hills area,  Ridgeview and Willard elementary.

    >>
  • Spokane Police searching for Rite Aid theft suspect who knocked employee unconscious with bottle of alcohol

    Spokane Police searching for Rite Aid theft suspect who knocked employee unconscious with bottle of alcohol

    Friday, January 19 2018 7:46 AM EST2018-01-19 12:46:42 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane Police are searching for the last of three suspects in a alcohol theft at Rite Aid that ended with two employees being assaulted before the suspects made their getaway. The incident happened Wednesday night at the Rite Aid in the 800 block of east 29th on Spokane's South Hill. Two of the suspects, an adult female and a juvenile male, have already been identified and booked into jail and juvenile detention.

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane Police are searching for the last of three suspects in a alcohol theft at Rite Aid that ended with two employees being assaulted before the suspects made their getaway. The incident happened Wednesday night at the Rite Aid in the 800 block of east 29th on Spokane's South Hill. Two of the suspects, an adult female and a juvenile male, have already been identified and booked into jail and juvenile detention.

    >>