United Airlines Flight to San Francisco Diverted Due to a ‘Strong Smell’

March 29, 2019, 6:18 PM UTC
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A United Airlines 737 from Baltimore to San Francisco was rerouted to D.C. because of a strong fuel odor. Justin Sullivan Getty Images
Justin Sullivan—Getty Images

Passengers flying Friday from Baltimore to San Francisco had an unexpected surprise: their flight had a weird and nauseating smell.

A mysterious odor in the cabin of a United Airlines flight leaving the Baltimore-Washington International Airport forced the plane to make an emergency landing at nearby Dulles International Airport in Washington, D.C., CNBC reports.

Seven passengers on the flight were reportedly taken to the hospital for evaluation following the landing after becoming ill due to the strong smell. The flight landed successfully, and United rebooked passengers on different flights.

One of the passengers on the flight tweeted that a “faint fuel smell” was on the aircraft as they were boarding, but become “quite strong” in the air.

United told the passengers that the aircraft, a 737, required “prolonged ventilation system maintenance,” according to CNN.

United has offered to cover the hospital bills and other expenses for those on board the flight. The issue did not impact other flights. The flight successfully landed at Dulles airport around 7:45am.

In February, four Alaska Airlines crew members and four passengers were treated for respiratory problems after a “sweet burning smell” permeated the cabin of a plane traveling between Chicago and Seattle.

That incident came a day after another Alaska Airlines flight made an unscheduled landing due to a mysterious odor in the cabin.