The Sidelines : Bullets’ Plane Forced to Land

A plane carrying the Washington Bullets to tonight’s NBA game with the Utah Jazz made an emergency landing in Denver after temporarily losing power in one of its two engines.

“We went through the whole emergency procedure--tuck your head, grab your ankles. It was pretty frightening on the whole,” Bullets Coach Wes Unseld said after the plane landed Sunday. “Some people were crying, that sort of thing.”

The plane, a United Airlines 737, left Baltimore-Washington International Airport at about 9 a.m. Sunday, made an intermediate stop in Denver and then was supposed to get into Salt Lake City about 2 p.m. Mountain Standard Time.

But, soon after takeoff in Denver, players from the University of Utah’s men’s basketball team, also on the flight, saw sparks coming out of the right engine.


Bill Marcroft, a reporter for KUED-TV in Salt Lake City, said the passengers were told that the problem was caused when a rag blew into the engine.