Passengers on board an American Airlines flight from North Carolina to Chicago say they were “holding their breath” when the plane started skidding on the runway shortly after landing.
The airline confirmed to Global News that at approximately 7:43 a.m. CT, American Eagle flight 4125, operated by Envoy Air, “slid off the runway due to icy conditions at Chicago O’Hare.”
Video captured on board by Joseph Lian shows the moment the flight begins to turn to the left and skid onto the grass. Some people can be heard expressing surprise before the plane comes to a stop.
“I think we landed,” one person can be heard stating in the plane.
CNN reports there was light snow with less than two kilometres of visibility, winds of about 48 kilometres an hour and a temperature of -5C, part of a system moving through the area that led to numerous flight cancellations by 1 p.m. ET at O’Hare.
American Airlines told Global News in an email that no injuries were reported and all 38 passengers and three crew members were deplaned and taken to the terminal.
While safe, some passengers expressed frustration over the decision to still attempt a landing despite the weather conditions.
“The conditions here were very bad. It was windy and it was icy,” Luis Torres Curet told CBS 2 Chicago after arriving in the terminal. “They should have known that … They attempted one landing. It failed, and they came back and attempted again, and we were lucky that we had a very competent pilot there that knew what to do.”
Fellow passenger Shaun Steele said the atmosphere in the plane was tense.
“I think everybody was just holding their breath because we didn’t know what was coming,” he said. “A lot of people were bracing for it, grabbing the seats in front of us.”
At least 900 flights had been cancelled at O’Hare on Monday, with another 95 cancelled at midway, while delays averaged just over an hour and a half as of 2:30 p.m.