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Frequent Flyer B


Scheduled Nashville-Baltimore Flight Diverts to West Virginia
DALLAS, TX—July 13, 2009—Southwest Airlines confirms Flight 2294, the 4:05 pm Eastern scheduled departure from Nashville to Baltimore/Washington diverted to Yeager Airport in Charleston, W. Va at approximately 5:10 pm Eastern today after a cabin depressurization. All 126 passengers and crew of five onboard landed safely and are awaiting a replacement aircraft in Charleston that will take them to Baltimore/Washington International Airport later this evening.
The aircraft cabin depressurized approximately 30 minutes into the flight, activating the passengers’ onboard oxygen masks throughout the cabin. Medical personnel in Charleston assessed passengers and no injuries are reported. Southwest Airlines is sending its maintenance personnel to Charleston to assess the aircraft, and the airline will work with the NTSB to determine the cause of the depressurization. According to initial crew reports, the depressurization appears to be related to a small-sized hole located approximately mid-cabin, near the top of the aircraft.

There is no responsible way to speculate as to a cause at this point. We have safety procedures in place, and they were followed in this instance to get all passengers and crew safely on the ground. Reports we have are that our passengers were calm and that our Pilots and Flight Attendants did a great job getting the aircraft on the ground safely.

In an abundance of caution, we have initiatied an inspection of all 737-300s tonight.  We expect only minimal impact to tomorrow's schedule until all of those inspections are complete.

***UPDATE:  Inspections of all of our 737-300's were completed last night with zero findings. There were minimal delays to our operation this morning due to those inspections (less than 20 flights were delayed about 30 minutes each). We are still working with the NTSB on a cause.

Our BWI Customers diverted to West Va. landed safely in BWI last night via a replacement flight. Customers were in good spirits and very complimentary of the Crew's efforts.  Southwest is refunding the roundtrip fare for these Customers and thanking them  for their cooperation and patience.


Explorer C
I was a passenger on flight 2294 and, with reference to the poster above's comments about turbulence, there wasn't any of note. Not on take-off and not during the flight. It was pretty smooth and, as I remember, a basically cloudless day. Now, the rest of those comments were pretty much on target--the size of the hole was not going to put the plane at risk. The problem was, none of us on the plane really knew the extent of the damage until after we landed. All that said, the flight attendents and the flight crew did a fantastic job in handling all aspects of the ordeal and it was amazing how the passengers basically stayed calm. No doubt concerned--but no panic or hysteria whatsoever. And the three flight attendents had a HUGE part in keeping the passengers in a positive frame of mind and calm. I hope that Southwest recognized them for their handling of the situation. They should have earned a huge measure of appreciation for a job well done.
Explorer C
I'm a big fan of Southwest Airlines, and I've been eager to hear the results of the investigation into what caused the hole. Has anything been determined yet? Has the aircraft involved been repaired and put back into service? Kudos to the Flight 2294 Passenger above for sticking up for Southwest and their crew, too. The media tends to miss all of the things that went RIGHT with this incident, thanks to hard work and proper training.
Explorer C
Anonymous, perhaps you should see a psychiatrist for this dellusional anxiety induced parinoid delierium. Please, do not drive or fly.
Explorer C

I have a question for those who were passengers on Flight 2294.
Please tell me the situation on the plane.
Did the temperature drop?
Wasn't it cold?
Was the wind blowing on the plane?
Did something get sucked out of the hole?
thank you.