A SkyWest Canadair CRJ-700 on behalf of American Airlines, registration N770SK performing flight AA-3083 from Springfield, IL to Dallas Ft. Worth, TX , was enroute at FL360 about 160nm northeast of Fort Smith, AR when the crew initiated an emergency descent to 10,000 feet. The aircraft diverted to Fort Smith for a safe landing on runway 07 about 32 minutes after leaving FL360.
A passenger wrote: “I was aboard AA3083 SPI to DFW when we were halfway through flight, the pilot all of a sudden descending from 36,000 to 9,900 feet because of a shattered windshield and we were stuck at Fort Smith At. For over five hours and that airport was closed so all we had was vending machines. When I asked how I was going to be compensated for missing my connection and flying out next day missing a full days wages. The comment from agent was I get a hotel stay at a Super 8. Don’t get me wrong I’m thankful we made it back to the ground safely but the agent made an off hand remark that AA put in computer that it was a “crew issue” . Sweep under rug is what they are doing. Pilot was visibly shaken when we landed and he said it wasn’t a bit stoke it just shattered.”
A replacement CRJ-700 registration N778SK reached Dallas Ft. Worth with a delay of about 5 hours.
The occurrence aircraft remained on the ground for about 23 hours, then positioned to Colorado Springs, CO and is still on the ground in Colorado Springs about 18 hours after landing there.