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WestJet flight delayed 8 hours after emergency slide deployed by mistake

Last Updated Sep 12, 2018 at 1:00 pm EDT

A WestJet Airlines Boeing 737 (737-700) jetliner takes off in Calgary, Alta., on May 22, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Larry MacDougal

WestJet passengers flying from Fort Lauderdale to Toronto on Saturday were delayed eight hours due to a series of mishaps.

A spokeswoman said Flight 1230 left Fort Lauderdale at 11 a.m., but had to divert to Raleigh, N.C., when a passenger went into medical distress.

While at Durham International Airport, a ground crew unintentionally deployed the plane’s emergency slide.

As a result, the plane could not be used, and WestJet had to source a new aircraft and crew from Toronto for the return flight.

The new flight left Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport at 7 p.m.

One of the passengers on the flight said WestJet hadn’t given any explanation for the delay as of 5:45 p.m.

Delia Silverberg said she was only told when the flight would leave and handed a $15 food voucher as compensation.