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Dr. Gridlock
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Posted at 01:01 PM ET, 09/14/2011

Justice Ginsburg, Commerce head aboard plane evacuated at Dulles International Airport

[This post has been updated]

United Airlines Flight 586, scheduled to depart Dulles at 12:34 p.m. for San Francisco, was evacuated Wednesday afternoon after it reportedly experienced an engine problem.

The plane departed Gate C19 at 12:41 p.m. and the incident happened prior to takeoff. The plane had not made it to the runway.

“The pilot noticed something wrong with the engines and decided to evacuate the plane,” said Kim Gibbs, a spokeswoman for the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. “The emergency chutes were deployed. Then the passengers boarded shuttles and returned to the terminal.”

A report from Reuters quoted airports spokeswoman Tara Hamilton as saying there were reports of three injuries, with one person transported to a hospital for non-life-threatening injuries and the others refusing treatment.

Supreme Court spokeswoman Patricia McCabe Estrada said Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was on the United flight and was evacuated without injury. She is bound for San Francisco for an appearance Thursday at the University of California Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco, Estrada said.

Acting Secretary of Commerce Rebecca M. Blank was also aboard the plane, according to a department spokesman. Blank, who was headed to an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting in San Francisco, also evacuated uninjured, he said.

A photo tweeted by @jodionthweb shows a plane on the tarmac with its slides deployed, with firefighters and other people in the foreground. In her Twitter profile, @jodiontheweb says she is the social media director at McLean-based Gannett, Jodi Gersh. The Post first learned of the incident via Gersh’s tweets.

According to Mike Trevino, a spokesman for United Airlines, the plane had 179 passengers and a crew of six.

“We are investigating the situation,” he said. “I don’t have confirmation that it was an engine problem, but it was not anything inside the cabin.”

The plane, described on flight tracking sites as a Boeing 757-200, was scheduled to land in San Francisco at 6:02 pm. EDT.

Trevino said passengers departed Dulles airport by 5 p.m. aboard another United plane.


By and  |  01:01 PM ET, 09/14/2011

Categories:  Aviation

 
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