A private twin-engine Navajo aircraft made an emergency landing at Yeager Airport Thursday morning without landing gear.
“It just looked like a normal landing until he got on the pavement,” said assistant airport manager Brian Belcher, who witnessed the landing. “You saw the smoke come up and the propellers are all bent up, and it came to a dead stop right in the middle of the runway.”
Emergency crews from the airport and the 130th Airlift Wing of the West Virginia Air Guard were quickly on the scene. Belcher said emergency officials were there but no one appeared to be injured.
Crews are now working to remove the aircraft without causing further damage. The tower at Yeager had no advanced warning from the pilot of a problem with the landing gear.
“There was definitely some metal to pavement smoke or debris coming up,” said Belcher. “Looks like the runway is OK and as soon as they get it removed, we’ll do a runway check and get it back open to commercial traffic.”
Belcher said it’s unknown if Charleston was the destination of the small plane or if the pilot diverted to make an emergency landing.
The Federal Aviation Administration and the NTSB are on the scene and will be conducting a full investigation.