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 NortonHouse passes measure to give federal contractors backpay for shutdown Star-studded cast to perform play based on Mueller report DC theatre to host 11-hour reading of the Mueller report 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 ShusterAnti-corruption group hits Congress for ignoring K Street, Capitol Hill 'revolving door' Republicans spend more than million at Trump properties K Street giants scoop up coveted ex-lawmakers MORE (R-Pa.), ranking member Peter DeFazioPeter Anthony DeFazioThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Pass USMCA Coalition - Deadline approaches for 2020 Dems Dems eye big infrastructure package, with or without Trump Dems, Trump pull T surprise on infrastructure MORE (D-Ore.), Aviation Subcommittee Chairman Frank LoBiondoFrank Alo LoBiondoK Street giants scoop up coveted ex-lawmakers The 31 Trump districts that will determine the next House majority LoBiondo launches consulting firm MORE (R-N.J.) and ranking member Rick LarsenRichard (Rick) Ray LarsenActing FAA chief defends agency's Boeing 737 Max safety certification Pelosi, Dems struggle to find unity in Mueller response Booker takes early lead in 2020 endorsements 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.