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American Airlines tire blows out on runway, starts fire

American Airlines tire blows out on runway, starts fire


The flight was taking off in Tampa and was supposed to go to Phoenix before the tire blew out and caused a fire. It’s just the latest in a number of such incidents.

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An American Airlines plane blew a tire upon takeoff and caught fire in Florida on Wednesday, the latest of multiple such incidents.

The flight, which was taking off from Tampa and headed Phoenix, was delayed after the “mechanical issue” on the runway right before takeoff, airline spokesman Alfredo Garduño told USA TODAY on Wednesday. The issue, according to Garduño, involved Boeing 737-800 tires.

Emergency responders responded to the scene just before 8 am after receiving word that a tire had blown off and caught on fire, Tampa International Airport spokesman Joshua Gillin told the Tampa Bay Times.

Everyone on board, including 174 passengers and six crew members, were “safely deplaned and were bussed to the terminal,” Garduño said. No other flight operations were affected by the incident, the Times reported.

All passengers were rebooked on other flights to Phoenix.

“We never want to disrupt our customers’ travel plans and apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused,” Garduño said.

Another airline lost a tire recently

American Airlines isn’t the only airline reporting a rogue tire. United Airlines also reported a lost tire during takeoff early Monday morning.

A United Airlines aircraft headed to Denver from Los Angeles lost one wheel on takeoff shortly after 7:15 am but managed to land safely at its destination around 10 am, USA TODAY reported. No injuries to the 174 passengers and flight crew onboard were reported in connection with the incident, Bloomberg reported.

“The wheel has been recovered in Los Angeles, and we are investigating what caused this event,” United Airlines said. Additional details about the tire were not immediately available.

The lost tire is just one of many incidents disclosed by United Airlines in the past year, which triggered a federal safety review of the carrier. United Airlines is still in a position of “increased oversight” by the Federal Aviation Administration, which was called in to conduct an in-depth examination of the airline’s operations, FAA spokesman Ian Gregor told USA TODAY on Monday.

David Evans, an FAA-certified airline transport pilot and flight instructor, previously told USA TODAY that the loss of a plane tire is “rare.” And that “from time to time, this sort of thing does happen but it’s usually uneventful at the end of the day.”