by Haydee Clotter
SAVOY, Ill. (WICS/WCCU) — Inbound jet engine failure is the call that came in around 9:30 Wednesday morning.
Within an hour, a second call came in.
Two different emergency landings at the University of Illinois Willard Airport is unusual.
Airport staff said emergency landings like this don’t happen often at a small airport like Willard and it’s more common at larger airports because of outgoing and incoming traffic.
The small jets can handle about four to eight passengers and both were headed south.
Airport staff said the pilot made an announcement to passengers that there was an engine issue and the plane will land at the nearest airport, so buckle up.
“Both aircrafts landed with no problems and they’re having mechanics look at the issues to see what the issues are and always it’s an abundance of caution that they go ahead and declare an emergency and land, because they get a warning in the cockpit and they don’t really know what that warning means,” said University of Illinois Willard Airport Executive Director Gene Cossey. “So they go ahead and take it as serious as possible.”
Cossey said anything like a drop in oil pressure, a voltage regulator light going off or fuel interruption indicator could trigger an emergency landing.
Flightstar mechanics will check the engine and make necessary repairs, re-certify the aircrafts for flight and the airline puts them back in service.
Flightstar mechanics said the cause of the emergency landing stays in-house and they wouldn’t release specifics.
Willard Airport receives these type of calls maybe three or four times a month, according to Cossey.
These were private aircrafts, so owners found other means of transportation and continued their trip.