News

FAA investigating after Southwest jet lands at wrong airport

FAA investigating after Southwest jet lands at wrong airport

WRONG AIRPORT: Rescue personnel help passengers off a Southwest Airlines flight that was supposed to land at Branson Airport in southwest Missouri but instead landed at a nearby airport that only had about half as much runway. A Southwest spokesman the plane, scheduled to fly from Chicago to Branson, landed at the Taney County Airport and all 124 passengers and five crew members were safe. Photo: Associated Press/Scott Schieffer

By Kevin Murphy

KANSAS CITY, Missouri (Reuters) – U.S. authorities are investigating why a Southwest Airlines Co jet carrying 124 passengers landed at the wrong airport near Branson, Missouri, late Sunday, a Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman said Monday.

The Boeing 737-700 jet landed at the M. Graham Clark Downtown Airport instead of the longer runway at Branson Airport, the main commercial air strip near Branson, according to Southwest Airlines. The airports are about 7 miles apart.

The FAA is investigating the mistaken landing but had no other comment, said spokeswoman Elizabeth Isham Cory.

The aircraft took off from Chicago Midway Airport on Sunday for Branson, with continuing service to Dallas Love Field, said Southwest spokeswoman Michelle Agnew in a statement Monday.

The plane landed safely, but at the wrong airport, and passengers were taken by ground crews to the correct airport, Agnew said. Another Southwest jet was brought in for the connecting flight to Dallas Love Field later Sunday night, she said.

Southwest is looking into “all the circumstances” which led the captain to land at the wrong airport, Agnew said. Southwest apologized to passengers, is refunding the cost of their tickets and giving travel credits, she said.

Southwest has served Branson, a musical entertainment and tourism mecca in southwest Missouri, since last March but is discontinuing service in June, it has announced.

The Branson landing marked the second time in less than two months that a jetliner landed at the wrong airport in the Midwest.

On Nov. 21, a Boeing 747 cargo plane flown by Atlas Air that was supposed to land at McConnell Air Force Base in Wichita, Kansas, instead landed on the much shorter runway at Colonel James Jabara Airport, a Wichita city airport.

(Reporting by Kevin Murphy; Editing by Scott Malone and Phil Berlowitz)

Recent Headlines

16 mins ago in Local

Illinois Woman Sentenced for Health Care Fraud

Fresh
gavel2

Ann Marie Sheppard of O'Fallon was sentenced this past week. The first six months of her probation will be served in home confinement.

24 mins ago in Local

Bill Seeks to Ban Drones From Flying Near Prisons

Fresh
FILE - This March 12, 2014 file photo shows a drone landing after flying over the scene of an explosion that leveled two apartment buildings in East Harlem in New York. Brian Wilson, the owner, says he uses the aerial drone to document buildings, weddings and news events. The Federal Aviation Administration bars commercial use of drones no matter how seemingly benign. Officials say rules to address the special safety challenges associated with unmanned aircraft need to be in place before they can share the sky with manned aircraft and final regulations could be years away. But tempting technology and an eager marketplace are outrunning the aviation agency's best intentions. Photographers, real estate agents, moviemakers, and others are hurrying to embrace the technology.

The bill, sponsored by Sen. Tim Bivins, seeks to prevent drones from flying over prison yards and dropping packages containing drugs, pornography, razorblades and other contraband, which has happened in other states.

31 mins ago in Local

Officials Delay Decision on Delavan Armory

Fresh
wtax 011015

Officials met Monday in Delavan and decided to delay a decision on the building's future until June, when they will have more information on various options.

36 mins ago in Local

Water Monitors to Test Quality of Bloomington Lakes

Fresh
bloomington

Stations will be installed in creeks flowing into Lake Bloomington and Evergreen Lake this spring.

42 mins ago in Local

Voter Registration Deadline Ahead for March 15 Primary

Fresh
I Voted Stickers

The Illinois primary election is March 15.