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Smoke forces Ann Romney's plane to make emergency landing

September 21, 2012|By Maeve Reston
  • Firefighters enter a plane that had been carrying Ann Romney. The craft was forced to make an emergency landing in Denver.
Firefighters enter a plane that had been carrying Ann Romney. The craft… (Romney for President )

The charter plane ferrying Ann Romney from Omaha to Santa Monica on Friday was forced to make an emergency landing in Denver after the pilot reported seeing smoke in the cockpit.

The malfunction — which Romney campaign aides said was most likely an electrical fire — led the pilot of the Canadair Challenger 601 aircraft to divert to Denver about 2:40 p.m. Mountain time, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

Romney and several of her aides, as well as her Secret Service detail disembarked using the plane’s stairs. An aide to Mitt Romney tweeted a picture of firefighters boarding the small jet after it landed.

No injuries were reported on the plane, which was being chartered by World Wide Jet, according to the statement from the FAA. The websiteof World Wide Jet lists the aircraft as having a passenger capacity of 10 people and an airspeed of 484 miles per hour.

Andrea Saul, a Mitt Romney spokeswoman, tweeted that the plane had filled with smoke but said: “All okay. Thank goodness.” Saul said the candidate and his wife spoke by telephone immediately after the plane touched down.

The Republican presidential nominee campaigned in Nevada on Friday, holding a luncheon fundraiser followed by a rally in Las Vegas.

Since the Republican National Convention in August, Ann Romney has maintained a brisk schedule of campaign events and fundraisers for her husband across the country.  On Thursday, she held a rally for her husband’s campaign in Milwaukee and a women’s event in Clive, Iowa.

After campaign events Friday in Nevada and San Francisco, her husband will fly to San Diego, where the couple own a home in La Jolla. He will campaign in Colorado on Monday before heading to New York for several campaign events and a planned Ohio bus tour next week.

Ann Romney will make an appearance Tuesday on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.”

maeve.reston@latimes.com

twitter.com/maevereston

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