Missing Delta plane engine cover believed to be in Cleveland - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Missing Delta plane engine cover believed to be in Cleveland

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Photo: WSMV Photo: WSMV

A Delta Airlines flight from Atlanta to Chicago had to make an emergency landing in Nashville after part of the plane broke away from the plane over Cleveland, Tennessee.  
The Boeing 717 was flying at about 28,000 feet, when it hit turbulence. Airline officials say the turbulence was so severe, one of the plane's engine covers came off, hitting part of the fuselage.  

Officials are now looking for the missing piece and residents are looking too.

"That's wild, it could be anywhere here, it could be in your front yard or backyard, it could be anywhere," said resident John Shelton. 

Betty Pack says she couldn't even imagine making that kind of a find herself. 

"I'd just think what is that and where did it come from," said Pack. 

Delta officials say the Boeing 717 was flying at 28,000 thousand feet when it hit severe turbulence over Cleveland,  former NTSB Chairman Jim Hall tells Channel 3 that turbulence alone couldn't have done this . 

"It's infrequent, very infrequent in this situation looking at the photographs of the aircraft with the cowling totally off, you know it raises a question as to whether that piece of the engine had been properly secured," said Jim Hall. 

Hall says a large piece of sheet metal being dropped at 28,000 feet, could have ended in a tragedy. 

"It could have gone through a roof of someone's house or business and obviously if it struck somebody it could have caused a fatal injury," said Hall. 
"That ain't safe for anyone, I think they need to inspect their planes better," said Shelton. 

The damaged plane landed safely in Nashville with 109 passengers aboard. Delta is now investigating the incident, the airline says the safety and security of their customers is a top priority. Residents in Cleveland say they'll think twice before booking a flight. 

"No and I'm not going to, there's too much these days happening," said Pack. 

If you find the missing engine cover or cowling contact Delta or the local Federal Aviation Administrative Office at  (404) 474-5300.
Hall says it's important that investigators examine the part to see what went wrong and prevent something like this from happening again. 

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