Southwest flight leaving BWI slides off runway

LINTHICUM, Md. (WMAR) - Officials confirm that a plane slid off the runway while it was preparing to take flight Tuesday morning. 

They say the Southwest Airlines flight 906 was leaving BWI and heading to Montego Bay, Jamaica when it turned and stopped near the pavement edge.

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The FAA released the following statement: 

Southwest Airlines 906, a Boeing 737, slid sideways on Taxiway PAPA while preparing for departure at Baltimore-Washington International Airport today at 10 a.m. The aircraft remained on the taxiway and will be towed to the gate. The passengers are being deplaned and bussed to the terminal. Contact the airline for passenger information. The FAA will investigate.

Crews were able to get the 143 passengers and six crew members that were on the plane back to the airport terminal. 

One passenger explained what happened to ABC news,

"We were taxiing on the runway not too fast, we were just at the point where the plane needed to turn 180 degrees to the runway when all of a sudden the throttle went down, we missed the turn, heard the brakes coming on and we slid into the grass. The pilot then came on the intercom and said we hit ice. We all had to leave our personal belongings on the plane, we were bussed back to the terminal and now are waiting for another plane," said Donna Edmonds. 

A spokesperson with BWI Airport said they are still unsure as to what caused the plane to slide. They told ABC2 News that 75 flights had departed from that same runway before flight 906 attempted to take off. The pavement temperatures were also above freezing and there was no ice on the taxiway or runway. The pavement was tested immediately after the incident and it passed FAA standards. 

Southwest Airlines sent the following statement 

At approximately 10:00 a.m. local time on Tuesday, February 7, the front of the aircraft operating Southwest flight #906 from Baltimore Washington to Montego Bay International Airport traveled to the edge, but did not exit, the taxiway prior to departure. The 143 passengers and six Crewmembers safely deplaned via airstairs and were bussed to the airport terminal. There are no injuries to report. The Customers onboard the flight will be accommodated on a different aircraft and are scheduled to arrive in Montego Bay approximately three hours behind schedule.  As always, the safety and support of our Customers and Employees remains our primary focus and we are working to get them on their way as quickly as possible.

The plane was removed from the runway around 12:30 p.m.

No injuries were reported. 

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