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WATCH: United Airlines plane loses engine cover on way to Honolulu, makes emergency landing

Passengers aboard what one woman called the "scariest flight of my life" are breathing sighs of relief after making a safe landing following a midair engine problem.

>> Watch passenger video from the flight here

According to CNN, United Flight 1175 from San Francisco lost an engine cover over the Pacific Ocean less than an hour before it was set to land in Honolulu.

>> DOT reveals which airlines ranked highest for complaints in 2017

"There was a loud bang ... and then the plane really started shaking," passenger Allison Sudiacal told KHNL. "It was like rattling and the plane was kind of shaking like boom, boom, boom."

Passenger Maria Falaschi tweeted several photos along with the caption, "Scariest flight of my life."

The Boeing 777, which was carrying 363 passengers and 10 crew members, "declared an emergency due to a vibration in the right engine" before safely landing about 40 minutes later in Honolulu, the Federal Aviation Administration said, according to KHON. Emergency personnel were "standing by as a precaution," the Hawaii Department of Transportation said.

>> Read more trending news 

"Our pilots followed all necessary protocols to safely land the aircraft," United said in a statement, according to KHON. "The aircraft taxied to the gate and passengers deplaned normally.”

The FAA said it is investigating the incident.

DOT reveals which airlines ranked highest for complaints in 2017

The U.S. Department of Transportation received 18,148 complaints about air travel in 2017.

It was a year when airline incidents were in the headlines, including a United passenger dragged from a plane and a Delta passenger mauled by an emotional support dog.

>> Read more trending news 

The number of complaints about air travel to the federal government last year — which included complaints about airlines, tour operators and other travel industry companies — was up 1.3 percent from 2016, according to statistics for the year released recently by the U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics.

The DOT logged 851 complaints about treatment of disabled passengers in 2017 and 98 complaints about discrimination, according to the department’s air travel consumer report.

>> On AJC.com: PHOTO GALLERY: Air travel complaints by category

Spirit Airlines, an ultra low-cost carrier, had the highest rate of complaints. A total of 11,570 of the complaints were about U.S. airlines, down slightly from 2016, while more than 6,000 complaints in 2017 were about foreign airlines.

Here’s the ranking of U.S. airlines based on the rate of complaints received by the DOT in 2017:

Airline — Complaints per 100,000 passengers boarding planes

  1. Southwest — 0.47
  2. SkyWest — 0.53
  3. Alaska — 0.57
  4. ExpressJet — 0.73
  5. Delta — 0.92
  6. Hawaiian — 0.95
  7. JetBlue — 1.14
  8. United — 1.89
  9. Virgin America — 1.92
  10. American — 1.96
  11. Frontier — 2.78
  12. Spirit — 5.59

Source: U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics

Must-see: Passenger jet skids off runway, gets stuck on edge of cliff

A passenger jet carrying 162 people got stuck on a cliff's edge moments after skidding off a runway early Sunday at Turkey's Trabzon Airport.

According to The Associated Press, no one was hurt in the incident, and everyone on board was evacuated safely. The airport was closed temporarily.

>> Read more trending news 

Authorities said they did not know what caused the incident involving the Pegasus Airlines Boeing 737-800, which was traveling from Ankara to Trabzon, the AP reported.

Dramatic photos from the scene quickly circulated on social media. Take a look at some of them below:

Plane disappears from radar over Gulf of Mexico after taking off from Oklahoma City

A plane that took off from the Wiley Post Airport in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, is missing.

The small aircraft, which can seat five people, was supposed to land in Georgetown, Texas, but radar data shows that it kept going and flew south over the Gulf of Mexico.

>> Read more trending news 

The Coast Guard said it is searching for the last point of contact to confirm whether or not the plane is lost. Officials with NORAD sent four F-16 fighter jets to aid in the search. 

Authorities found the plane, but officials said they could not get the pilot to respond. 

The pilots of the fighter jets said they could only see one person on board -- the pilot. 

Mexican authorities, the US Coast Guard and the State Department are now in charge of the investigation. 

The plane is registered to Abide Aviation LLC out of Edmond, Oklahoma.

The aircraft is a Cirrus SR-22, which is usually equipped with a parachute system that requires someone to pull a lever in the event of an emergency.

Delta flight forced to return to Atlanta airport twice

A Delta flight on its way to London turned around and returned to Atlanta for a second time overnight

>> Delta warns flights may be affected by Southeast winter weather

Delta Flight 284 took off from Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport shortly after 7 p.m. Tuesday. 

Delta told WSB-TV that pilots heard a noise coming from the plane and out of an abundance of caution decided it was in their best interest to turn the plane around. 

>> Bird enters cockpit, forcing airplane’s return to gate

According to Flightaware.com, the flight made it just over the North Carolina border when it turned around. 

The plane landed safely shortly before 9:30 p.m. at Hartsfield-Jackson.

A Delta representative said the passengers heading to London would be placed on another flight, which was expected to take off around 11 p.m. Tuesday. That plane took off but then turned around again at about 1:30 a.m. Wednesday.

>> Read more trending news 

The third flight is not scheduled to leave until Wednesday night, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

Delta passenger upset after being mistaken for human trafficking victim

A Delta Air Lines passenger is upset after being mistaken for a human trafficking victim.

>> Read more trending news

Lawrenceville, Georgia, resident Stephanie Ung and her friend were returning from a birthday trip in Cancun and coming home to family on Thanksgiving when they were stopped and questioned by officials after the flight arrived in Atlanta. Her brother Henry Ung described the incident in a Facebook post alleging racial discrimination.

Stephanie Ung, a 26-year-old kindergarten teacher in Gwinnett County, said, “They just kept questioning me.”

“I was embarrassed at the airport,” Ung said. “I didn’t do anything wrong. ... This whole experience pretty much has me traumatized.”

>> On AJC.com: Airport training targets human trafficking

Delta said its flight attendants “are trained to look out for signs of possible trafficking.” Amid a campaign to stop human trafficking in Atlanta and beyond, some airline and airport workers have been trained to look out for such signs.

Delta said in a written statement the two women were “observed by another customer to not be in possession of their passports — a possible indicator of a human trafficking event. Delta took the concern seriously and contacted the appropriate authorities who addressed the customers upon landing.”

>> On AJC.com: Hartsfield-Jackson art exhibit focuses on human trafficking

“While their investigation did show that our customers were not being trafficked, we train our crew members to remain alert and use their professional experience and practice best judgment to ensure the safety of customers,” the airline said.

Delta also said: “We do not tolerate discrimination and are troubled by any accusations of discrimination. We have reached out to speak with our customers directly.”

NASA postpones JPSS-1 weather satellite launch

NASA, in partnership with the NOAA, scrubbed Tuesday’s launch of a weather satellite that will help improve weather forecasts due to a last-minute technical problem.

JPSS-1 is the first of a few polar orbiting satellites to launch from the Joint Polar Satellite System.

>> Read more trending news 

The satellites will help improve NOAA forecasts for the three- to seven-day time frame. The data collected from the JPSS is fed into the numerical forecast models to help improve them. The satellites will also collect atmospheric measurements, ground conditions and ocean conditions like vegetation, hurricane intensity, and atmospheric moisture.

The JPSS-1 was scheduled to be launched around 4:47 a.m. EST from Vandenburg Air Force Base in California. The launch has been postponed until Wednesday.

This satellite is a polar orbiting satellite, which means it will orbit the earth from the one pole to the other passing the equator 14 times a day. Full coverage of the planet will be provided then twice a day.

2 security officials fired after United Airlines passenger dragged off plane in viral video

Airport security officials who were caught on video in April forcibly removing a passenger from a United Airlines flight in Chicago have been disciplined. Two employees were fired and two suspended following the incident, which caused public outrage after the footage went viral, the Washington Post reports.

>> PREVIOUS STORY: Man forcibly removed from flight after not voluntarily giving up seat

The fiasco became a huge public relations headache for United. In the videos, officers are seen aggressively grabbing a passenger — Dr. David Dao — who was reportedly selected at random to be removed from the overbooked flight so that his seat could be given to a United crew member.

>> PREVIOUS STORY: United passenger dragged from plane reaches settlement with airline

In a quarterly report, Chicago’s Office of the Inspector General found that a Chicago Department of Aviation security officer “improperly escalated the incident” and that a sergeant “made misleading statements” and “deliberately removed material facts” from employee reports on the April 9 incident aboard United Express Flight 3411 from Chicago to Louisville, Kentucky. The first officer and the sergeant were fired, and another two officers involved in the incident were suspended — one of whom subsequently resigned, the report said.

>> Read more trending news 

The security officers “mishandled a non-threatening situation,” which led to the “violent” removal of the 69-year-old Dao, the inspector general’s report said. “The use of excessive force caused the passenger to hit his face on an armrest, resulting in a concussion, a broken nose and the loss of two teeth,” a news release accompanying the report stated.

Doctor saves woman overdosing on flight

A Boston cardiologist saved a passenger who passed out after a believed overdose 30,000 feet in the air.

>> Watch the news report here

Dr. Anil Punjabi was about to fall asleep on his flight from Boston to Minneapolis on Friday when he heard the Spirit Airlines attendant shouting for a doctor.

Other passengers alerted the crew when a woman a few rows back had been in the bathroom for a long time. When she got back, she was turning grey and slumped over, and passengers noticed she didn't have a pulse. Punjabi said he was working with an OBGYN nurse also on the flight to give her mouth-to-mouth CPR when they discovered a needle hidden in her bra.

"We were down on the ground within 25 minutes, but at that time she was completely unresponsive,” Punjabi said.

For those 25 minutes, the crew, Punjabi, the nurse and an EMT trainee all worked to keep the woman alive.

The situation is putting a spotlight on the gravity of the opioid epidemic in Boston.

It’s also raising serious concerns for Punjabi about whether action should be taken by airlines across the U.S. to prevent this from happening again. Punjabi and the crew kept the woman alive until the plane was on the ground 25 minutes later, but in other situations, that may not be possible, he said.

>> Read more trending news

"You need to talk to your union, you need to talk to Spirit, you need to talk to the company. I said the one thing you need to get in your med kit is Narcan,” Punjabi said.

Helen Tederous, the spokesperson for Buffalo Niagara International Airport, said a Boston flight bound for Minneapolis made an emergency landing in Buffalo on Friday night, and a woman was taken to the hospital for an overdose.

Needles are allowed on flights, but must be declared and screened through TSA. Click here for more information.

– WFXT has reached out to Spirit Airlines for comment on the incident and has not yet heard back.

Mom says baby overheated as United Airlines plane sat on tarmac for 2 hours

2017 is not a good year to be an airline company, especially if that company’s name is United Airlines. 

Passenger and mom Emily France said her baby became overheated recently on a delayed flight as the aircraft waited on the Denver International Airport (DIA) tarmac, reports the Denver Post. The 39-year-old said that passengers waited for more than two hours on the plane despite a heat wave in the area. France recalled “hot air coming from the vents.”

>> Read more trending news

“We just sat and sat and sat,” she said. “I hit my call button and said, ‘I think it’s getting dangerously hot back here.'”

France also said that despite requesting an ambulance, she had to wait for 30 minutes before she was allowed to leave the plane with her son, Owen.

“They couldn’t evacuate us. It was chaos. I really thought my son was going to die in my arms,” France said as she criticized the airline for not being prepared to handle her situation.

>> Man forcibly removed from flight after not voluntarily giving up seat

Owen was treated at a children’s hospital after the incident. Doctors said he suffered from the heat but thankfully remained unaffected by heat-related medical conditions.

DIA spokesman Heath Montgomery corroborated the call for an ambulance.

A representative for United emailed the following statement to the Denver Post:

"Yesterday, a child onboard flight 4644 at Denver International Airport experienced a medical issue while the aircraft was taxiing prior to takeoff. The pilot returned to the gate as our crew called for paramedics to meet the aircraft. Our thoughts are with the child and family, and we have been in contact to offer travel assistance."

Read more here.

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