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Plane carrying Donald Trump made emergency landing after engine failure following GOP donor speech in New Orleans

Former U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during the Conservative Political Action Conferenceat The Rosen Shingle Creek on February 26, 2022 in Orlando, Florida.

Joe Raedle | Getty Images

A plane carrying former President Donald Trump made an emergency landing last weekend when one of its engines failed over the Gulf of Mexico after he spoke to GOP donors in New Orleans, a source familiar with the situation told CNBC.

Trump’s plane, which was owned by a donor, turned around shortly after taking off and returned to New Orleans on Saturday night, that person said.

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Trump, who had just spoken at a donor retreat sponsored by the Republican National Committee, was on the way back to his home at his Mar-a-Lago Club in Florida. In his speech, Trump said he was strongly considering another run for the White House in 2024.

The emergency landing was first reported Wednesday by Politico.

The source who spoke with CNBC said they could confirm the events as described in a subsequent account about the incident published by The Washington Post.

Politico, citing a source, wrote, “Audio of the communications between the pilot and the air traffic control tower revealed that the landing was described as ’emergency in nature.'”

The Post, citing flight tracking data, said Trump was onboard a Dassault Falcon 900 owned by a GOP donor when the engine failed over the Gulf of Mexico.

The newspaper reported that he was traveling with Secret Service agents, advisors, and support staff.

The Post said the plane, which had taken off from New Orleans Lakefront Airport, returned to make the emergency landing at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport.

An air traffic controller, on an audio recording of the incident heard by CNBC, told the pilot at around 10:37 p.m. CT, “Just a heads up… there will be vehicles following you down the runway.”

The pilot replied, “I appreciate it.”

Both news sites reported that the RNC obtained another plane for Trump from a donor, and that he returned home by early Sunday morning.

A spokeswoman for Trump did not immediately respond to a request for comment from CNBC.

An RNC spokesperson declined to comment.

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