A Canadian North airplane destined for Iqaluit was deplaned on the taxiway at the Ottawa International Airport this morning.

The Boeing 737 plane carrying 72 passengers and four crew members was taxiing for departure when a mechanical issue was discovered with the plane.

Graeme Burns, who works with Canadian North, says the airport received a false alarm warning of a fire in the plane’s auxiliary power unit, a device used to provide air on the ground for starting engines and providing power and air conditioning on the ground.

Burns says the pilots stopped the aircraft, followed all checklist procedures, then deplaned the passengers through the normal entry door on the taxiway.

The passengers were then transported to the terminal by bus.

Canadian North has grounded the aircraft while it investigates.

Burns says Transport Canada and the Transportation Safety Board are also investigating. 

Canadian North passengers

Canadian North passengers mill around at Ottawa International Airport after being evacuated from a flight destined for Iqaluit this morning. (Harry Flaherty)