Hibbing, Minn. — A Mesaba Airlines flight had just taken off when the pilots reported a failed engine and returned to Chisholm-Hibbing Airport.
Passenger Terry Lawler says she heard a noise from the side of the twin-engine aircraft when it took off. She says she assumed it was ice build up, but watched as the propeller started and stopped.
Pilots told passengers about the engine failure. Lawler says she was confident the pilots would get them down safely.
The flight carried 18 passengers and three crew members bound for Minneapolis. It only made it about two miles from Hibbing.
Emergency personnel rushed to the airport, but the plane made a safe return.
Airline spokeswoman Leslie Parker said she was not allowed to elaborate on the plane’s mechanical problem.