Passengers sue Southwest Airlines over emergency landing, allege they were 'confronted with their greatest fear'

PHOTO: In this file photo obtained April 18, 2018, National Transportation Safety Board investigators on scene examining damage to the engine of Southwest Airlines flight 1380, a Boeing 737-700 jet.PlayNTSB via AFP/Getty Images
WATCH Passengers sue Southwest over emergency landing

A group of passengers aboard a Southwest Airlines flight from New York's LaGuardia Airport to Dallas, Texas, is suing the airline over an emergency landing that followed a fatal engine explosion.

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Southwest flight 1380 landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, April 17 after an engine exploded about 20 minutes into the flight at an altitude of 32,500 feet, causing Jennifer Riordan to be nearly sucked out of the plane. She died after being pelted by metal fragments.

PHOTO: The woman who died following an engine failure aboard a Southwest flight was identified as New Mexico resident Jennifer Riordan.Obtained by ABC

The woman who died following an engine failure aboard a Southwest flight was identified as New Mexico resident Jennifer Riordan.

Riordan’s family is not part of the lawsuit, which was filed in Manhattan State Supreme Court by nine of her fellow passengers on Tuesday. The plaintiffs claim they “were confronted with their greatest fear, the overwhelming horror of being trapped in a plane about to crash.”

One plaintiff, Joe Arenas, is the husband of another passenger, Cindy Arenas, alleges in the lawsuit that he “suffered the loss of consortium of his wife, plaintiff Cindy Arenas, due to the devastating impact upon their marital relationship.”

PHOTO: The engine of a Southwest Airlines plane after an emergency landing at the Philadelphia airport, April 17, 2018.Joe Marcus/Twitter
The engine of a Southwest Airlines plane after an emergency landing at the Philadelphia airport, April 17, 2018.

The lawsuit claims negligence and names the following defendents: Southwest, Boeing and three companies involved in the building of the plane's engine.

“Southwest Airlines negligently failed in its duty to provide the highest degree of care for its passengers whose lives were at risk,” according to the lawsuit. “Southwest Airlines negligently failed to reasonably monitor, inspect, test service, maintain and repair the aircraft and engine.”

Southwest told ABC News: “We do not comment on pending litigations.”

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