Passengers Forced to Evacuate Southwest Airlines Plane at Midway

Passengers on a Southwest Airlines flight from Chicago to Boston were forced to evacuate the plane Wednesday night due to a “mechanical issue.”

The airline company said pilots aborted takeoff at the airport following "a performance issue with one of the engines." Emergency responders were called to meet the plane and 143 customers exited the aircraft via air stairs, according to a statement from Southwest Airlines.

Chicago Fire Department spokesman Cmdr. Frank Velez said smoke was coming from one of the plane's engines.

Videos purporting to show sparks shooting from the engine began surfacing on social media after the incident. The video has not been independently verified and who took the video was not immediately clear. 

Chicago Fire Media Affairs said no injuries were reported and the incident was cleared shortly after 11:30 p.m.

The airline said a new aircraft would take the 143 customers to Boston. Passengers were expected to arrive at Logan International Airport about three hours late.
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