Southwest Airlines flight lands at wrong US airport
Southwest Airlines flight ends up 11 kilometres from its destination in Missouri
A Southwest Airlines flight that was scheduled to arrive at Branson airport in southwestern Missouri instead landed at an airport 11 kilometres north - with a runway half the size of the one at the intended destination.
Southwest Airlines Flight 4013, carrying 124 passengers and five crew members, was scheduled to go from Chicago's Midway International Airport to Branson airport, airline spokesman Brad Hawkins said in a statement late on Sunday.
But the Boeing 737-700 landed at Taney county airport.
Hawkins did not have information on why the plane went to the wrong airport.
Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Tony Molinaro said the agency was investigating the incident.
"The landing was uneventful, and all customers and crew are safe," Hawkins said.
It was the second time in less than two months that a large jet has landed at the wrong airport in the United States.
In November, a Boeing 747 that was supposed to deliver parts to McConnell air force base in Wichita, Kansas, landed 15 kilometres north at Colonel James Jabara Airport.
That plane was flown by a two-person crew and had no passengers.
The website for Taney county airport says its longest runway is 1,139 metres. Branson airport's website says that its runway is 2,176 metres long.
Flightaware.com says the Southwest flight landed at 6.11pm on Sunday. It was partly cloudy in Branson at that time.
"Our ground crew from the Branson airport arrived at the airport to take care of our customers and their baggage," Hawkins said.
Flight 4013 had been scheduled to go from Branson to Dallas' Love Field, and Hawkins said a plane was flown in specifically to Branson airport around 10pm to take the passengers and crew to Dallas.
Hawkins said the aircraft at Taney county airport was able to take off on the smaller runway, and Southwest expected to fly it out early yesterday.