A United Airlines flight en route to Chicago was forced to make an emergency landing at Tampa International Airport on Wednesday after a door indicator light turned on.
The airline’s flight, United Flight 2434, took off from Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport at 3:42 p.m. and landed at Tampa at 4:35 p.m., according to FlightAware. The plane was carrying 123 passengers and five crew members, who made the emergency landing as a precaution to address a possible mechanical issue.
According to a United Airlines spokesperson, the door indicator light caused the pilots to alert dispatchers, and the plane was rerouted to Tampa. The aircraft remained there for a while before taking off for Chicago again. Aviation expert John Cox, a former captain, explained that when a light like this turns on, pilots follow a specific procedure outlined in the aircraft’s checklist, which may result in a diversion to a different airport for landing.
United Airlines on Boeing 737 Max Flight Makes Emergency Landing in Tampa
— United Airlines (@united) January 6, 2024
This incident comes after a series of safety concerns surrounding Boeing 737 MAX jets, like the one that lost its door plug mid-air. Alaska Airlines experienced an emergency on January 6 after one of its doors blew open mid-air, forcing the plane to turn back and land safely with all 171 passengers and six crew on board.
As a result, airlines and safety bodies around the world grounded some versions of the Boeing 737 MAX jets pending inspections, with dozens of flights canceled after the incident. The FAA has grounded 171 Boeing 737 Max 9 planes until operators complete enhanced inspections, which include both left and right cabin door exit plugs, door components, and fasteners.