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Sunday, May 27, 2018
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Spirit delays Fort Lauderdale departures to check aircraft

Hundreds of Spirit Airlines were stranded overnight — including some headed to Tampa — after the airline said it delayed several flights at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport following engine failure on an aircraft.

Spirit spokeswoman Misty Pinson said Thursday the Miramar-based airline was completing “a proactive and voluntary check” on aircraft as a precautionary measure following the engine failure on a flight last week. The work should be finished Thursday morning.

A flight from Tampa, scheduled to leave at 9:40 p.m. Wednesday, departed at 6:16 a.m. Thursday and arrived at 7:11 a.m., according to the airline’s website.

Destinations still delayed Thursday morning included Orlando, Los Angeles, New York, Las Vegas and Denver. Pinson said it takes about 45 minutes to check each aircraft but some flights are “experiencing significant delays.”

Passengers told Miami television stations they’d been given few details about the delays.

Several passengers became unruly, prompting the Broward County Sheriff’s Office to respond to the terminal. One angry passenger had to be removed from a plane, according to WFOR-TV in Miami. Other media reports said many passengers had to sleep on the terminal floor and in chairs overnight.

A spokeswoman at the Federal Aviation Administration in Atlanta said the agency has no information about the delays.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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