Mysterious odor forces Spirit Airlines flight to return to LAX

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- A smell in a cabin forced a Spirit Airlines flight to turn around shortly after takeoff and return to Los Angeles International Airport on Friday.

It was a scare for passengers on Spirit Airlines flight 630 from LAX to Denver, Colorado. About 40 minutes into the flight, the plane was forced to turn around. Some passengers in the front of the cabin said they felt ill.

"I didn't know anything was going on," said passenger Dez Vargas. "I didn't smell anything and didn't see anything and then the captain came on over the intercom and said that we have to make a landing back to LAX because some passengers are feeling nauseous due to a scent, and that they're doing the precautions to get scent out of the cabin."

On the ground, firefighters opened the baggage compartment door wearing full protective gear with oxygen tanks. They entered the belly of the plane looking for anything unusual.

"Once we landed, firefighters and paramedics came on the plane, and they took the people that were feeling ill, about seven people, then they took them off the plane and they let us off the plane," Vargas added.

Only one person was transported to the hospital. Spirit Airlines said the oxygen masks never needed to deploy.

In a statement, the company said in part: "The aircraft in question has been taken out of service while our maintenance team inspects it. We apologize for the inconvenience."

Spirit Airlines said it is working to place passengers on other flights to get them to Denver.
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