GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KDVR) — Daniel Perkins and his 12-year-old daughter were expecting to fly to Salt Lake City Saturday night until multiple delays and a mechanical issue landed the duo in Grand Junction.
Perkins told FOX31, on the hour and nearly 50-minute flight, they ended up having engine failure forcing an emergency landing in the far western side of the state. He also said passengers weren’t told they were landing somewhere other than Salt Lake City.
“It’s scary to not know what’s going on if it’s a really bad situation or really it’s not a big deal,” Perkins said.
He said some passengers said they saw flashes of fire. Perkins said lights in the cabin were flickering and other passengers on board were anxious.
“We started having issues, I guess. We didn’t hear anything from the captain until we were actually landing,” Perkins said.
Perkins said he saw three firetrucks on the runway when they landed and other emergency vehicles.
“Then we were towed in cause the plane didn’t move. We were near the terminals then walked into the building,” Perkins said.
American Airlines could not confirm that there was the possibility of an engine fire and stated there were no reported injuries, and their maintenance teams will evaluate the aircraft.
Once off the plane, Perkins said the issues continued to happen. He said they got into the terminal at Grand Junction Regional Airport and everything was closed. He said American Airlines didn’t offer a hotel or food and drink vouchers while he said they waited around three more hours until the emergency plane arrived.
He said originally they were supposed to get into Salt Lake City at 4 p.m. on Saturday and didn’t end up getting home until 4 a.m. Sunday morning.
“It ended up being a 28 or 29-hour ordeal,” Perkins said.
American Airlines responded to FOX31 when we asked if there was an engine fire, they responded with this quote:
American Airlines flight 2065 with service from Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) to Salt Lake City (SLC) diverted to Grand Junction (GJT) following a possible mechanical issue. The flight landed safely, and a replacement aircraft was used to continue on to SLC. We thank our team for their professionalism and focus on safety and apologize to our customers for the inconvenience.Tim Wetzel, Global Engagement / Corporate Communications American Airlines