A passenger filmed the engine cover coming off a United plane

a view of an airplane

  • A United Airlines passenger filmed part of a plane engine cover peeling off and flapping in the wind during his flight on Sunday morning.
  • United Airlines said there was a “mechanical issue with one of the engines.”
  • The flight returned to its origin airport, Denver International Airport, instead of continuing to Orlando, Florida.
  • Photos from the plane after it landed shows the cover pulled back and the engine exposed.
  • Passengers were put on another plane. One passenger said the pilot took “some pretty heroic decisive action” and “potentially saved some lives” by turning back.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

A United Airlines passenger filmed the engine cover peeling off a plane, which was forced to turn back to the airport in Denver, Colorado due to an engine issue.

United flight 293 – which took off from Denver International Airport for Orlando, Florida, on Sunday morning – had to turn back after what a United spokesperson called a “mechanical issue with one of the engines.”

One passenger, Bobby Lewis, filmed the engine cover shaking and starting to peel off the Boeing 737 plane:

#United Airlines, a #Boeing 737-800 (reg. N27239), flight #UA292 departed from #Denver at around 8:00am for #Orlando when the left hand engine suffered an issue, the crew decided to return back to Denver.

*Video: Bobby Lewis#flightmodeblog#flightmode#aviation#avgeek#B737pic.twitter.com/svMCBOaaqb

He also captured it from another angle:

RAW VIDEO: A Denver passenger captured engine damage to this United Airlines flight this morning. UA flight 292 safely returned to @DENAirport.

STORY: https://t.co/6zS8rp5qtbpic.twitter.com/P10iWm5Wsw

Deanna Allbrittin, a reporter with Orlando ABC affiliate WFTV, shared an image of the plane after it landed, with part of the engine exposed:

I was at @MCO to talk w/ passengers on this plane to Orlando, which had to turn around after the engine panel came off. They will be landing here soon. In a statement, @united said it was a mechanical issue, but the flight was able to land safely. Now moving on to DeLand. (2) pic.twitter.com/lbzJiivqyA

According to ABC affiliate Denver 7, the plane landed back in Denver around one hour after it took off.

One passenger told Good Morning America on Monday morning that the pilot took “some pretty heroic decisive action” in turning the plane around. She said the pilot “potentially saved some lives.”

The pilot contacted air traffic control, saying “We need to get back to Denver relatively quickly,” according to audio of the call broadcast by GMA. 

“An engine panel has become detached from the airplane, we have about six hours of fuel and we have 196 people.”

Nobody was hurt in the incident.

United put the passengers on another flight to Orlando while its maintenance team looked at the plane.

It told passengers: “While we certainly regret the inconvenience, your safety is our top priority and we wouldn’t jeopardize that for any reason.”

Another passenger on the flight, Abbi Reznicek, shared messages from United to passengers, which said that the maintenance team “needs more time than we thought to finish their work,” and that the airline was putting them on another plane to Orlando instead.

“We know returning to the airport wasn’t part of your plans today, so we greatly appreciate you hanging in there!” one of the messages read.

Waiting to board a NEW plane. pic.twitter.com/UnP8T17PL8

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