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Sunday, January 27, 2008 - Page updated at 05:03 PM

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Southwest Airlines flight skids off runway in Spokane

A Southwest Airlines plane with 118 passengers on board skidded off a snow-covered runway Sunday afteroon after safely landing at Spokane International Airport, the airline said.

No one was injured.

The pilot of Southwest Flight 485 was slowly taxiing to the gate when the front wheels of the plane slid off the runway around 1:40 p.m., said Brandy King, a spokeswoman for the Dallas-based carrier.

Heavy snow had been falling on Spokane and the surrounding region since Saturday.

The airport had shut down operations until crews could move the Boeing 737, which was obstructing the runway, King said.

Southwest used three buses to shuttle the plane's passengers and five crew members to the terminal.

The plane will be removed from service for routine inspection to make sure the aicraft wasn't damaged and that mechanical failure did not play a role in the incident, King said.

Flight 485 originated in Albuquerque and made a stop in Portland, Ore., before continuing on to Spokane.

Copyright © 2008 The Seattle Times Company

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