All clear after passengers hospitalized aboard flight diverted to MYR


Myrtle Beach Fire, Horry County Fire and Airport Fire were at the Myrtle Beach International Airport responding to a hazmat call Thursday night, according to Lieutenant Jonathan Evans with Myrtle Beach Fire Rescue.

Myrtle Beach International Airport spokesperson Kirk Lovell said in a statement Friday morning:

"No flights canceled as a result of last nights isolated incident. The incident occurred on an inbound flight, not at the airport. Aircraft diverted to MYR. Airport never closed and is open. Passengers of diverted flight, except those hospitalized, have continued on to their final destination."

A passenger from the Spirit Airlines flight (NK779) posted on Twitter passengers finally left MYR around 3:00 a.m. Friday.

According to the ABC station WPLG in Miami, passengers landed safely in Fort Lauderdale around 5:30 a.m.

An entire Airbus 321 plane of people were on the tarmac standing next to the plane late Thursday night, according to a witness.

The Spirit Airlines flight (NK779) was coming from La Guardia airport in New York en route to Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. and was diverted to MYR due to an unknown substance on the plane, according to MBFR.

A passenger on the diverted flight said the crew spoke over the intercom and told passengers they were being diverted because of a medical emergency and an odor.

He said he did not smell anything, but did notice an elderly woman appeared to be ill.

He said they were given pizza and water and treated very well while they waited.

A family member waiting for their loved one who was on the plane told us that the passengers were still being kept on the tarmac as of 11:20 p.m. Thursday.

As of around 12 a.m. Friday, a substance was not found and all units were de-mobilizing.

About 7-10 people were being treated out of the 220 on the plane, according to Lt. Evans.

We are told that some people were taken to the hospital. Hospital officials were positive, saying the passengers would be okay.

While the airport stayed open during the situation, emergency crews did not allow people inside, according to Kirk Lovell with MYR.

A representative at Spirit Airlines responded to a tweet from a person claiming to be one of the passengers on board asking for a Wi-Fi password. Spirit Airlines tweeted back that they were working on getting the information and that an aircraft was en route to get guests to their final destination.

A Spirit Airlines Spokesperson said, "an odor developed in a section of the aircraft. The source of the odor is being investigated, and a supplemental aircraft is en route to Myrtle Beach to pick up our Guests. We apologize for the inconvenience this diversion has caused. At Spirit Airlines the safety of our Guests and Crew is paramount."

That passenger said he had been told another flight was scheduled to come get the remaining passengers around 1:30 a.m.

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