Faulty heat sensor triggers emergency landing on Sea-Tac-bound plane

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SEATAC — A Seattle-bound Delta 757 flight was forced to make an emergency landing in Pasco, Wash., late Monday night after a faulty heat sensor triggered fire extinguishers to go off in the cargo bay of the plane mid-flight.

All 183 passengers inbound from Atlanta were safe and were not in danger at any time, officials said.

The plane was entering the final stages of its four-plus hour flight from Atlanta when the faulty heat sensor went off. The pilots made an emergency landing in Pasco and all passengers were forced to get off the plane. However, officials were not able to find any evidence of a fire, and believe the faulty heat sensor caused the extinguishers to go off.

John Kemp, a passenger on the plane, said the incident was fairly uneventful from his standpoint.

“Everybody was really calm,” Kemp said. “The crew did a great job. So there was no drama.”

Kemp and some other passengers rented a car in Pasco and drove to Seattle late Monday night. Rob Smith, an Everett resident who was on the flight, said the end of the plane ride was very quiet.

“The worst thing you can deal with on a plane is fire,” he said. “Personally, I just thought of my grandkids and my wife.”

The plane and the remaining passengers took off from Pasco early Tuesday morning and were expected to arrive in Seattle around 5:45 a.m. Tuesday.

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