Original story By Martin Weil via Washington Post

A United Airlines plane headed for San Francisco returned to Dulles International Airport on Monday evening because of what was described as a mechanical problem.

An inspection made after landing determined that it had a blown tire on its landing gear, an airport spokesman said.

No injuries were reported aboard Flight 1564, a twin-jet Boeing 757, said Rob Yingling, a spokesman for the regional agency that operates the airport.

He said the blown tire was on the left main landing gear. It was not clear why the tire failed, and the incident will be investigated, Yingling said.

The jetliner carried 151 passengers and a crew of six, said United spokesman Luke Punzenberger.

After the plane landed and halted on the runway, mobile lounges were brought to it to take passengers back to the terminal for rebooking, Yingling said.

He said the plane was then towed to the airport’s D gates for follow-up by the airline’s maintenance crew.

The runway on which the plane landed was closed for a time, and airport personnel cleaned fluids and debris from it so it could reopen, Yingling said.

He said some other air traffic was delayed when it was shifted to other runways during the temporary closure.

Photographs of the 757 show three landing-gear mechanisms, one beneath each wing and one beneath the airplane’s nose.

Each of the wing mechanisms has four tires, and the nose gear has two, for a total of 10.

The 757 is described as a midsize, narrow-body airliner.

According to date posted online by the manufacturer, the 757-200 model has a maximum takeoff weight of 255,000 pounds, which by rough approximation would impose a load of about 25,000 pounds on each tire.

Full story, here.

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