August 01, 2014 - 11:56 AM
KELOWNA – Crews at the Kelowna Airport scrambled to get a small, private plane with “mechanical issues” removed from the north end of the runway Friday.
It took about two hours to get the runway cleared of debris and the surface inspected for safety. Flights resumed at about 12:30 p.m.
The Cessna Citation, with two blown tires under each wing, had been blocking the runway and flights were not able to land.
The pilot wasn’t hurt, but without tires, the aircraft could not just be towed out of the way.
“Our emergency crews are working with Kelowna Flightcraft and some of our other tenants and we’re looking at options to remove the aircraft,” Kelowna Airport spokesperson Jenelle Hynes said during the runway closure.
A total of 12 commercial flights, six arriving and six departing, were affected.
Some of the flights were diverted to the Kamloops Airport.
Hynes said it was up to the airlines to decide whether or not to divert aircraft.
“They will take an alternate route because they were already in midflight and getting ready for their approach for landing,” she said, “Ultimately some of those aircraft, instead of circling around and waiting, were diverted to other airports.”
For the latest on flight arrivals and departures go to the Kelowna Airport's website.
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— This story was updated at 12:44 p.m., Friday, Aug. 1, 2014 to include information about the runway reopening.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014