By Jeff Toquinto

Editor’s Note: North Central West Viriginia Airport Deputy Director said the FAA has completed their investigation and the runway is once again open. The runway opened around 5:30 p.m., Jan. 8.

North Central West Viriginia Airport Director Rick Rock said a general aviation aircraft spun off the runway early Monday afternoon and the plane suffered, according to Deputy Director Shawn long, “significant damage,” particularly to the underside of the plane.

“The good news is that there were no injuries,” said Rock. There were two pilots on board.

Officials said the incident was the result of the landing gear of the twin engine plane failing. The failure, although not causing injury, did lead to the aircraft suffering damage as noted above.

Shortly after the incident, the runway was shut down and remains shut down. The Federal Aviation Administration requires the runway at the NCWV Airport be closed. It is part of standard procedure that will allow for an investigation.

The FAA investigator had not shown up as of 3:30 p.m., according to Long. Long did say the investigator was traveling to Bridgeport.

“Ultimately it is at the FAA’s discretion as to when to reopen the runway, but we expect it to be open in a few hours,” said Long. “There are plenty of marks, but no damage to the runway.”

No flights have been canceled at this time. Current flights are on delay, however, Long said.

The incident occurred at 12:46 p.m. according to the Harrison County 911 media log.

Ironically, the airport has multiple reports annually of planes reporting landing gear issues as they approach the facility. Almost 100 percent of them do not result in an incident. This time, however, there was an incident and, ironically, there was no report prior.

“They didn’t declare an emergency. It was an incident upon landing,” said Long. “They were not aware of any issue.”

The Bridgeport Fire Department responded to the scene of the accident.

“The fire department responded exactly how I expected them to,” said Rock, who said this is the first such incident he can recall during his time at the airport. “Their professionalism was on point, and we greatly appreciate their support.”