United flight makes emergency landing only minutes after takeoff due to 'open door' light

Chicago-bound Flight 2434 left Sarasota, Florida at 3:42 pm, and made an emergency landing in Tampa Bay.

Jarryd Jaeger Vancouver, BC
A United Airlines flight was forced to make an emergency landing on Wednesday when one of the "open door" indicator lights came on shortly after takeoff.

Chicago-bound Flight 2434 left Sarasota, Florida with its 123 passengers and five crew members at 3:42 pm, and touched down in Tampa Bay less than an hour later.

According to the New York Post, United did not specify whether the issue in question involved the open door light, saying in a statement that the decision to make an emergency landing was made "as a precaution ... to address a possible mechanical issue."

A spokesperson from the airport in Tampa Bay, however, told the outlet that dispatchers at air traffic control there received a call from the plane's crew citing the light as the reason behind their request to free a runway up.

The news comes just days after Alaska Airlines grounded all flights following an incident in which a flight from Portland, Oregon to Ontario, California was forced to make an emergency landing at its point of origin when a panel blew off the side of the plane, causing depressurization of the cabin.

The plane in that incident was a relatively new Boeing 737-9 MAX, and while United is the only other American airline to fly such aircraft, the one in Wednesday's emergency landing was an Airbus A319.


Alaska subsequently announced that it was taking "the precautionary step of temporarily grounding our fleet of 65 Boeing 737-9 aircraft."

"Each aircraft," the airline said, "will be returned to service only after completion of full maintenance and safety inspections. We anticipate all inspections will be completed in the next few days."

As WFLA reports, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg reiterated that "every plane that they deliver to an airline, every plane that goes into the skies, needs to be 100 percent safe.

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