Wind-shear fears abort takeoff in Michigan

April 4, 2011 at 11:26 AM

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., April 4 (UPI) -- A wind-shear alert aborted a jetliner's takeoff in Grand Rapids, Mich., early Monday, an airport spokesman said.

The American Airlines Boeing 737, carrying 145 passengers from Miami Sunday, had been diverted from Minneapolis because of bad weather there, Bruce Schedlbauer of Gerald R. Ford International Airport told the Grand Rapids Press.

The plane refueled and was taxiing down the runway when the wind shear signal went off shortly after midnight. It did not leave the ground or attempt another takeoff. Most passengers stayed the night and were being rerouted Monday morning, Schedlbauer said.

A dangerous wind shear was not confirmed, but could have been caused by thunderstorms in the area, the National Weather Service's Grand Rapids office said.

There were major differences in wind directions and speeds at upper and lower levels of the atmosphere, as well as extreme temperature variations, said meteorologist Ernie Ostuno.

A wind shear refers to a change in wind speed, direction or both.

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