Home Emergency Management News EDM Wednesday Briefing: Southwest Airlines In-Flight Engine Failure

EDM Wednesday Briefing: Southwest Airlines In-Flight Engine Failure


Emergency and disaster management briefing for April 18, 2018: One person is dead after a Southwest Airlines flight suffers an engine failure during flight, a storm system prompts high winds that when coupled with drought conditions helped spawn 28 wildfires in the Southwest and Southern Plains, a wildfire in Colorado destroyed at least 5 homes, rescue crews airlifted individuals off the island of Kauai after heavy rains prompted flooding and landslides, a disgruntled employee likely targeted two company executives in a shooting at a picnic for casino employees over the weekend that killed one person, three bodies are found in an SUV with Tennessee license plates that was parked in Burbank, the tax filing deadline for Americans is extended by one day after an IRS computer failure, and hepatitis A is confirmed in a worker at a Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant in Warren, Michigan.

  1. A Southwest Airlines plane suffered a catastrophic engine failure during its flight on Tuesday while en route from LaGuardia to Dallas, resulting in the death of one passenger. Several others were injured during the incident, and Flight 1380, a Boeing 737-700, had 149 souls on board when it made an emergency landing at Philadelphia International Airport and was met by Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) and medical personnel. The plane landed safely, and theNational Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) launched a GO Team to the site to begin its investigation into the incident.  
  2. High winds of up to 90 mph from a strong storm system, coupled with drought conditions, have helped spawn at least 28 wildfires that are burning across the Southwest and Southern Plains. High winds from the system prompted the rapid spread of a wildfire in western Kansas along the Colorado border that destroyed homes in Stanton and Baca counties overnight Tuesday into Wednesday, before firefighters were able to contain the blaze. Although the winds are expected to subside as the storm that caused them moves eastward, fire alerts have already been posted in Arizona and New Mexico as more high winds are forecast to move into those states on Thursday.
  3. Drought-stricken areas, high and gusty winds, and low humidity created dangerous fire conditions and prompted a wildfire to start east of Pueblo, Colorado, forcing the evacuation of more than 200 homes as winds whipped through the area. An emergency was declared as law enforcement officers went door to door to evacuate residents, and the rapidly moving wildfire destroyed five homes and several outbuildings. Another wildfire burning near Colorado Springs destroyed at least 10 outbuildings and sent a sheriff's car up in flames.  
  4. Rescue crews in Hawaii airlifted dozens of people off the island of Kauai as floodwaters threatened homes and trapped people in evacuation shelters, parks, and along beaches. Multiple landslides, which were spawned by heavy rains and flooding on Saturday night, forced road closures and damaged homes, and caused power and water outages. Damage assessments began Tuesday as crews began working to clear landslides and restore power, although officials warned some area residents about contaminated water supplies due to a water main break.  
  5. Police believe that two company executives of a luxury resort-casino in Las Vegas that were shot at a company picnic over the weekend were specifically targeted by a disgruntled employee. As of Tuesday, police were still looking for the suspected shooter, identified as Anthony Wrobel, 42, who had worked at the Venetian for 15 years as a dealer. Wrobel shot Mia Banks, vice president of casino operations, along with executive director of table games, Hector Rodriguez, at close range. Banks later died at the hospital from her injuries, while Rodriguez is listed in stable condition.  
  6. A parked SUV with Tennessee license plates held three dead bodies when it was discovered in Burbank, California on Tuesday. A woman who works nearby, Lisa Alvarez, noticed the vehicle on Tuesday because it was sitting a no-parking zone. Police were called due to a foul smell emanating from the vehicle, where one body was discovered by a parking officer, and once paramedics arrived on the scene, they found the other two bodies. Police believe the victims may be three men who were reportedly missing from Bakersfield and at this time, are investigating all the deaths as homicides.  
  7. The deadline to file taxes for Americans has been extended by one day due to computer system failures at the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Although the IRS did not identify what caused the failure, the issues prevented the acceptance of electronically submitted returns (e-file) and impacted direct pay features. The IRS did indicate that the malfunction was likely hardware related, and promised extensions to taxpayers once the systems were restored.  
  8. Health officials in Warren, Michigan are cautioning patrons who visited a Buffalo Wild Wings to be alert for signs and symptoms of hepatitis A after a worker at the restaurant was confirmed to have the disease. Macomb County Health Department stated that anyone who dined at the restaurant between March 24 and April 9 is potentially at risk for contracting hepatitis A, and symptoms could appear anywhere from 15 to 50 days after exposure. Officials also noted that a vaccine is available to individuals that is effective if administered within 14 days of exposure.  

Kimberly Arsenault Kimberly Arsenault serves as an intern at the Cleveland/Bradley County Emergency Management Agency where she works on plan revisions and special projects. Previously, Kimberly spent 15 years in commercial and business aviation. Her positions included station manager at the former Midwest Express Airlines, as well as corporate flight attendant, inflight manager, and charter flight coordinator. Kimberly currently holds a master's degree in emergency and disaster management from American Public University.