Plane lands safely after pilot loses consciousness

Associated Press

PORTLAND — An Alaska Airlines spokesman says a Seattle-bound jetliner made an emergency landing in Portland after the pilot lost consciousness.

Airline spokesman Paul McElroy says the co-pilot landed Flight 473 safely Thursday night after declaring an emergency to get priority care for the pilot.

The spokesman says the pilot lost consciousness “somewhere over Oregon.” He later regained consciousness and left the cockpit. McElroy says a doctor on board tended to him in the cabin. The pilot has been taken to a hospital but there was no immediate word on his condition.

The Boeing 737-700 with 116 passengers and five crew members left Los Angeles about 6:30 p.m. PST and touched down in Portland at about 9 p.m.

McElroy says the pilot has been flying for Alaska for 28 years and was current on his six-month medical evaluation.

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