Southwest Airlines Boeing 737 makes emergency landing after engine cover falls off

The FAA said it will investigate the incident.
Southwest Airlines airplane

A Boeing 737 airplane operated by Southwest Airlines was forced to make an emergency landing after the engine cover fell off during takeoff, officials said. 

Southwest Airlines Flight 3695 safely returned to Denver International Airport on Sunday about 30 minutes after its scheduled departure time "after the crew reported the engine cowling fell off during takeoff and struck the wing flap," the Federal Aviation Administration said. The plane was towed to the gate upon landing.

The FAA said it will investigate the incident.

The plane, which was headed to Houston, was a Boeing 737-800, which is a slightly older airplane design than the Boeing 737-MAX, which has been plagued recently by mechanical problems.

Southwest said its maintenance teams were reviewing the plane and the passengers and crew eventually left Denver shortly before 11 a.m. local time on a different aircraft. 

"We apologize for the inconvenience of their delay, but place our highest priority on ultimate safety for our customers and employees," the company said, according to The New York Times.

One person, who appears to have been a passenger on the plane, posted a video on X, formerly Twitter, showing parts of the aircraft flapping around and even flying off, with the caption, "Thanks for the heart attack this morning!"


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