Delta flight makes emergency landing at LAX after departure problem

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A Delta Air Lines flight from L.A. bound for Minneapolis made an emergency landing at LAX Tuesday after experiencing a problem at departure. (KABC)

A Delta Air Lines flight from Los Angeles bound for Minneapolis made an emergency landing at Los Angeles International Airport Tuesday morning after experiencing a mechanical problem soon after takeoff.

Flight 2116 left LAX at 8:39 a.m. Airport officials said the aircraft experienced a mechanical issue after departure. The nature and severity of the problem was not immediately known.

Delta said there were 146 passengers and six crew members on board the flight. There were no reports of injuries.

Comments from the pilots to air traffic controllers indicated they were struggling to keep the aircraft flying on a straight line.

Within minutes of takeoff, the crew calmly declared an emergency and an unidentified person in the cockpit explained, "we got a yaw problem, and we're having a little trouble controlling the airplane," according to recordings between the pilots and air traffic controllers posted on the website, a website that monitors and posts air traffic control audio recordings.

Yaw refers to the left-to-right movement of an aircraft's nose.

The plane was in a holding pattern to burn off fuel until it landed safely on runway 25R at 9:33 a.m. The tracking website FlightAware showed it looping over the Pacific Ocean before returning.

The flight path of Delta Air Lines Flight 2116 is shown on

After landing, the plane was followed across the airfield by emergency crews as it rolled back to a terminal.

According to Federal Aviation Administration spokesperson Ian Gregor, Delta Air Lines Flight 2116, a Boeing 757 aircraft, experienced a problem sometime after departure. Gregor did not have details about what went wrong.

Delta released a statement saying the emergency landing was initiated after "a potential systems issue" was observed aboard the flight. The airline said the plane was able to taxi to the gate under its own power, and that crews are working to re-accommodate passengers while technicians examine the aircraft.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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