Texas-Bound United Airlines Flight Declares Emergency After Engine Shutdown

Some people were hurt while evacuating the plan, says United spokeswoman

Federal authorities say a United Airlines flight declared an emergency when an engine shut down as the plane descended into Houston.

Flight 1168 was carrying 174 passengers and six crew members late Sunday when the engine trouble began near George Bush Intercontinental Airport. The Boeing 737-900 was traveling from Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey.

One passenger told Houston media outlets that he heard a loud bang, felt a strong vibration and saw a flash of light.

"People were starting to panic and everyone kept hitting the flight attendant call button, I guess to try to figure out what was going on," passenger Chris Morrison told KPRC-TV in Houston. "They made an announcement to stop doing that unless it was a medical emergency, but it was such a bad vibration and the optics of flashes coming from the engine that people were freaking out, so they kept doing it."

Another passenger says he saw flames coming from the engine, but a Federal Aviation Administration spokesman says emergency responders found no evidence of fire or smoke.

FAA spokesman Lynn Lunsford says crews are investigating the aircraft Monday.

United spokeswoman Rachael Rivas says some people suffered minor injuries while evacuating the plane.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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