Smoke in Southwest jet’s cabin prompts emergency evacuation just before takeoff at John Wayne Airport

SANTA ANA – A Southwest flight carrying 139 passengers and five crew members was evacuated Monday night, Feb. 12, just before takeoff at John Wayne Airport after smoke appeared in the cabin, an airport official said.

At about 7:30 p.m. Flight 2123 was about to depart for San Jose when the smoke appeared, said airport spokeswoman Deanne Thompson. The crew decided to deploy the inflatable chutes on the Boeing 737 to evacuate.

A fire was extinguished when everyone got off of the plane. Some people got minor injuries during the evacuation. No one was hospitalized.

Thompson said a preliminary investigation showed the blaze possibly began in an auxiliary power unit.

On Jan. 30, a A helicopter headed to to Catalina Island crashed a minute after takeoff into a Newport Beach neighborhood, killing the pilot and two passengers and injuring two others. Federal officials are investigating the cause.

Two days before, a 24-year-old pilot, landed on the 55 freeway, after going beneath an overpass in a small plane. He and a passenger had left San Diego for Van Nuys when the plane lost power.

And n June 2017 ,a Cessna crashed onto the I-405 freeway near John Wayne Airport, injuring the husband and wife aboard the plane but no one on the freeway. They had just left for Arizona when the engine sputtered coming up short of the airfield.

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