CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - A Southwest flight flying from Chicago to Newark was diverted to Cleveland due to a broken passenger window, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.
According to passengers on Twitter, the emergency exit window shattered during Flight 957.
The Boeing 737 left Chicago at 8:46 a.m. and made the landing at Hopkins at 10:46 a.m.
The aircraft landed without incident at Cleveland, according to an FAA statement. The agency plans to investigate.
"The aircraft has been taken out of service for maintenance review," said Southwest.
The passengers boarded a new flight to their destination, according to airport officials.
Jamie Lebovitz is a noted Cleveland based attorney who specializes in aviation case, and he calls this type of window fracture rare.
"I'm not surprised about the window holding up," Lebovitz said. "These windows are quite robust unless of course, shrapnel strikes one with great velocity and force which would have been the case on flight 1380."
Lebovitz described the two sets of windows on a plane.
The windows passengers can touch inside the cabin is merely cosmetic.
The thick window, that fractured in this case, is actually apart of the fuselage or main body of the plane.
"The window on the other side of the interior window, is part of the fuselage and its integrity is essential for pressurization of the cabin, which is critical for there to be breathable air at altitude. Any failure of the fuselage or outside window could lead to loss of cabin pressurization or worse," Lebovitz said.
With the stress put on a plane every time it takes off and lands, Lebovitz says a passengers safety is dependent on inspections.
"Every time an aircraft completes a cycle (a take off and landing) there is stress put on the fuselage and over time, cracks in the fuselage and windows can develop. Inspections performed at scheduled intervals are designed to detect any such cracks before they develop into something serious," Lebovitz said.