Emergency landing at regional airport in Castlegar
A private, twin-engine aircraft is safely on the ground, along with its two passengers, after what must have been a frightening ordeal this morning at the West Kootenay Regional Airport.
Fire Chief (and airport manager) Gerry Rempel said emergency crews got a call at 9:33 a.m. indicating a local plane was having difficulty.
"We had an aircraft with a landing gear indicator issue inbound to Castlegar," he said. "They called the fire department, and we also requested ambulance and RCMP to attend."
He said the nose wheel landing gear was not indicating that it was down, so the plane did a low fly-over above the airport.
"The landing gear appeared to be down, but you can't know for sure - it could be down, but not locked," he said adding that, unfortunately, the only way to know for sure is to land the plane and see what happens.
"We had to be ready in case the gear did collapse on landing - the only way you know for sure is when you touch down," he said.
The plane landed without incident and was escorted to the end of the runway by emergency services.
"It doesn't happen very often, but we do get about three or four aircraft incidents a year, usually with private airplanes," he said.
The two passengers were not injured.