Allegiant craft face inspections

By The Mercury

LAS VEGAS —  Allegiant Airlines has taken 30 of its 52 MD-80 aircraft out of service to inspect emergency slides, days after passengers and crew members slid to the tarmac to escape one of its planes in Las Vegas

The Las Vegas-based airline posted a notice saying an unspecified number of flights would be delayed, rescheduled or canceled during the next several days.

Company spokeswoman Jessica Wheeler said Friday that Monday’s evacuation following reports of smoke in the cabin triggered a maintenance review that found unspecified problems.

No injuries were reported in the evacuation at McCarran International Airport. The 144 passengers and six crew members were bound for Peoria, Ill.

City of Manhattan officials recently ratified a contract with Allegiant to provide air service between Manhattan and the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport. Flights will begin on Nov. 7. The biweekly flights will leave on Thursdays and Saturdays.

The flight will be on an Airbus 19, which holds about 156 passengers. It is comparable to the MD 17.

The Phoenix destination was one of the top-five destinations on Manhattan’s wish list. The other destinations include Washington D.C., Orlando, Fla., and New York.

Tickets are available online or by calling the airport.

Allegiant representatives told the Mercury during an interview following a press conference announcing the service in August that the airline has been seeking to expand its mid-level flights and Manhattan was a great fit.

Allegiant Airlines is owned by Allegiant Travel Co. The parent company’s shares slipped 81 cents, to $102.18, in midday trading.

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