DENVER (CBS4)– A preliminary report to the Federal Aviation Administration indicates that the United Express flight that caught fire states the plane’s tire caught fire and spread to the engine.
The flames broke out after Skywest flight 5869, operating as United Express, finished its short flight from Aspen to Denver International Airport on Sunday afternoon.
“Probably a piece of tire acted as a shrapnel getting thrown into the engine cowling, which is the intake of the engine,” said retired pilot Capt. Ross Aimer. “And a piece of hot tire caused the fan blades perhaps to fail and the engine caught fire.”
Everyone escaped the burning plane. Denver firefighters were able to get the fire under control on the runway at DIA.
The plane has been taken out of service while the FAA investigates the exact cause of the fire.
SkyWest released this statement to CBS4: After landing safely at Denver, SkyWest flight 5869, a CRJ700 operating as United Express from Aspen to Denver, experienced engine issues. All 59 passengers safely deplaned the aircraft and were transported to the terminal.