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TRAVEL

PenAir

PenAir is still trying to determine why an airplane engine failed last week, forcing one of its Saab 340s to make an emergency landing in Sand Point.

PenAir's Mike Walsh said mechanics have removed the flight data recorder, or "black box," which documents a plane’s trip history.

They’re sending the device for inspection to pinpoint the cause of the failure.

In the meantime, the plane will remain in Sand Point.

Courtesy of Nate Julian

A PenAir flight made an emergency landing in Sand Point on Tuesday, following an engine failure shortly after takeoff.

The Saab 340 aircraft returned to the airport safely, but passenger Nate Julian said it was a scary experience.

“It was kind of sketchy," he said. "A little bit hairy there for a minute.”

Headed to Anchorage, Julian said everything seemed normal until the plane reached the end of the runway.

“They went to ramp up the engines for takeoff," he said. "The left engine cut out a minute and then ramped up. Not a normal sound.”

PenAir

PenAir is not changing its luggage policy for Unalaska flyers.

The airline clarified its rules recently after Mayor Frank Kelty announced PenAir might make its policies more restrictive by cutting the number of allowed checked bags from three to two.

That’s not the case, according to Missy Roberts, PenAir's VP of sales and marketing.

“The Dutch Harbor/Unalaska market is not our market, so we can’t make those decisions," she said. "It has to come from Alaska Airlines.”

Right now, Roberts said Alaska Airlines has no plans to change its baggage rules. 

Chrissy Roes

In June, PenAir introduced a new type of aircraft to Unalaska, aiming to solve a longtime problem: Manufacturers don’t really make planes for this type of island.

Nine months later, the airline thinks it’s finally found the answer in the Saab 2000.

The high-speed turboprop has earned a 90 percent completion rate for flights between Unalaska and Anchorage.

Chrissy Roes/KUCB

In Anchorage, 120 people are stuck on standby, waiting for flights to Unalaska.

PenAir has canceled 17 flights to the island this week, according to Missy Roberts, the airline’s vice president of sales and marketing.

Roberts said 10 flights were canceled because of poor weather or eruptions from Bogoslof Volcano. Airplane maintenance caused the other seven cancelations.