Plane Carrying Congressmen Makes Emergency Landing

By Kate Barrett

Jul 22, 2008 6:38pm

ABC News’ Gina Sunseri, Lisa Stark and Z. Byron Wolf Report: A plane carrying seven members of Congress en route from Houston to Washington, D.C. made an emergency landing Tuesday.

The lawmakers have since landed safely after being diverted to New Orleans and are now working to board other flights back to Washington.

According to the carrier, Continental airlines, the Boeing 737-700 was virtually full and carrying 118 passengers plus crew when it suffered a loss of cabin pressure and masks deployed. As a result, the pilot put the plane into a very steep dive, according to a spokesperson for Texas Republican congressman Ted Poe, who was onboard.

Republican primary candidate Ron Paul of Texas was also one of the congressmen aboard the flight. According to spokesman Jesse Benton, Paul is fine and "it was more of an inconvenience than anything else."

Mechanics are now trying to determine why the plane lost cabin pressure.

The lawmakers were returning from a routine visit to their districts, trying to get back for a vote tonight.

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