Southwest flight from Chicago makes emergency landing due to cracked window

CLEVELAND, Ohio– Southwest Flight 957 from Chicago to Newark, New Jersey, made an emergency landing Wednesday after a window cracked, passengers said.

The flight was diverted to Cleveland, Ohio, after a report of an issue with a window aboard the aircraft, Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Elizabeth Cory said. It landed safely at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport, Cory said.

Passenger Linda Holley texted her son Ryan with a picture of the damaged window.

“Window on plane cracked during flight. Landing in Cleveland to be safe. Everything ok but scary,” one of her texts read.

In another, she said: “Yes Southwest. Just heard loud noise. Very large crack with piece of window missing at bottom. Just landed. Everything ok. Don’t know plan yet”

Southwest issued the following statement:

“The Crew of Southwest Flight 957, with scheduled service from Chicago Midway International Airport to Newark Liberty International Airport, made the decision to divert the plane to Cleveland-Hopkins International Airport for maintenance review of one of the multiple layers of a window pane.  The flight landed uneventfully in Cleveland.  The aircraft has been taken out of service for maintenance review, and our local Cleveland Employees are working diligently to accommodate the 76 Customers on a new aircraft to Newark.

“As a note, the aircraft maintained pressurization as there are multiple layers of panes in each window.  No emergency landing was requested and the flight landed uneventfully with no reported injuries.”

This incident comes a few weeks after the engine of a different Southwest failed and a woman was killed.  On April 17th about 20 minutes into a flight from New York to Dallas debris from the engine broke open a window, causing the woman to almost be sucked out of the plane.  She was pulled back into the plane but died at a hospital in Philadelphia.

It was Southwest’s first passenger death and the first death on a U.S. airline in more than nine years.