First lady Melania Trump, who was flying to Philadelphia on Wednesday morning for an event, was forced to return to Andrews Air Force base after smoke was seen in the cabin.
“The trip by First Lady Melania Trump to Philadelphia, where she is slated to visit a hospital, got off to a rocky start-about 15 minutes into what was supposed to be a 30 minute flight from Joint Base Andrews to Philadelphia, a small amount of smoke could be seen inside the plane and the interior filled with a burning smell,” a Washington Post reporter traveling with the first lady of the United States (FLOTUS) said in a pool report.
“A FLOTUS staffer came into our compartment and informed us that there was a ‘mechanical problem’ and we would be returning to Joint Base Andrews and would re-evaluate on the tarmac. A member of the flight crew passed out damp washcloths for passengers to hold over their faces for the smell. Plane landed again shortly after 9 am. We are being transported to the lounge area and are told we will be boarding a different aircraft soon,” the reporter wrote.
Another press pool reporter on board said journalists “could see a thin haze of smoke and smell something burning. The smell quickly became stronger.”
Melania’s spokeswoman, Stephanie Grisham, told the Associated Press that “everyone is fine and everyone is safe” after the plane returned to Andrews.
Said President Trump: “They’re fine. I just spoke to her. They came back, she got on another plane.”
“I hope this plane’s better than the first one,” Trump joked.