LAX Sees 2nd Security Breach in a Week as Passenger Opens Door, Exits Taxiing SkyWest Plane

Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) was the scene of a second security breach incident in under a week Friday night after a man apparently opened a door on a moving SkyWest plane, exiting "onto the taxiway," ABC Los Angeles reported,

Federal authorities with the FBI and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said a male passenger rose from his seat as a United Express flight began taxiing toward the runway around 7 p.m. Friday evening. The man allegedly started pounding on the cockpit door, but then redirected his attention toward exiting the plane altogether.

He successfully opened an exit door to the plane and fled the plane "via emergency slide," after the pilots halted the plane mid-taxi.

An air traffic control audio recording with the pilots overheard how the incident played out: "Charlie 4 Charlie, would you please call law enforcement because we are gonna head back to the gate...Looks like they may have blown one of our slides on the right side as well. We might have had a passenger that was a threat level jump out of the aircraft," the pilot told the tower.

Local and federal authorities told CBS Los Angeles that nobody onboard the aircraft was injured during the incident, and the male passenger was treated at the scene for unknown minor injuries. He was later taken to an area hospital by airport police officers and the Los Angeles Fire Department.

An arrest was not confirmed by Saturday morning, ABC Los Angeles reported.

United Express Flight 5365, an air travel route operated by SkyWest, was preparing to leave LAX en route to Salt Lake City, Utah, just after 7 p.m. local time when the incident occurred. The plane was able to make it back to the LAX gate without any further incident or injuries to passengers, federal authorities said.

The flight was then rescheduled to depart at 9:15 p.m., and the remaining passengers on the aircraft finally left LAX at 10:36 p.m. local time bound for Salt Lake City, per CBS Los Angeles.

This is the second security breach incident at Los Angeles' largest airport in just under one week. On Thursday, a motorist smashed a vehicle through a fence that surrounds LAX and led police officers on a brief chase down a taxiway. The driver was taken into custody and local authorities say they're still investigating any motive for that first security breach.

Newsweek reached out to LAX and FAA officials Saturday morning for any additional remarks about the two security breach incidents this past week.

LAX tarmac
Aerial view of the tarmac of Los Angeles International Airport, with Century Boulevard in the foreground, on an overcast day, Los Angeles, California, April 13, 2016. LAX was the scene of a second security breach incident in under a week Friday night after a man apparently opened a door on a moving SkyWest plane, "exiting onto the taxiway," ABC Los Angeles reported. Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images)