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Dem calls for aviation safety hearing after death on Southwest flight

Dem calls for aviation safety hearing after death on Southwest flight
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District of Columbia Del. Eleanor Holmes NortonEleanor Holmes NortonLawmakers say infrastructure efforts are falling victim to deepening partisan divide The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Facebook - Trump, Biden blitz battleground states Hillicon Valley: Big Tech hearing the most partisan yet | Rubio warns about foreign election interference | Trump campaign site briefly hacked MORE (D) is pressing House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee lawmakers to hold an aviation safety hearing following the Tuesday fatality on a Southwest Airlines flight.

Norton requested the hearing in a letter to Committee Chairman Bill ShusterWilliam (Bill) Franklin ShusterLobbying firm cuts ties to Trent Lott amid national anti-racism protests Ex-Rep. Frelinghuysen joins law and lobby firm Ex-Rep. Duffy to join lobbying firm BGR MORE (R-Pa.), ranking member Peter DeFazioPeter Anthony DeFazioDemocrats, GOP fighting over largest House battlefield in a decade Trump says talks on COVID-19 aid are now 'working out' Trump gambles with new stimulus strategy MORE (D-Ore.), Aviation Subcommittee Chairman Frank LoBiondoFrank Alo LoBiondoVan Drew wins GOP primary in New Jersey Amy Kennedy wins NJ primary to face GOP's Van Drew Stimulus price tag of .2T falls way short, some experts say MORE (R-N.J.) and ranking member Rick LarsenRichard (Rick) Ray LarsenDemocratic lawmaker calls for stronger focus on trade leverage to raise standards The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden, Harris launch Trump offensive in first joint appearance The Hill's 12:30 Report: Biden, Harris's first day as running mates MORE (D-Wash.), citing Tuesday’s Southwest Airlines emergency landing and a “60 Minutes” story about mechanical problems on low-budget carrier Allegiant.

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“As we prepare to consider legislation to reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration, I believe we should ensure that aviation safety remains at the forefront of our efforts,” Norton wrote, referring to a recently unveiled five-year reauthorization of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

“Holding a hearing on this issue would allow us to gather valuable information and demonstrate our commitment to ensuring the safety of the millions of Americans who rely on our nation’s airlines each year,” she wrote.

Norton sits on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and the aviation subcommittee.

The letter comes after a Southwest Airlines flight bound for Dallas Love Field Airport was forced to make an emergency landing after a piece of the engine broke off, shattered a window and partly pulled a female passenger out of the aircraft.

National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) chairman Robert Sumwalt said Tuesday that the blown engine had “metal fatigue.”

“Our preliminary examination of this was that there’s evidence of metal fatigue where the blade separated,” Sumwalt said at a press conference in Philadelphia. 

The safety agency is conducting an investigation into the incident and will hold another news conference Wednesday afternoon.

The incident occurred the same day an ExpressJet flight functioning as a Delta connection made an emergency landing at Washington, D.C.’s Dulles International Airport due to an issue with the aircraft’s wheels. No one was injured on that flight.