A propeller plane came in from the north for landing at the airport in Stavanger Monday morning without its pilot being aware that the plane’s landing gear hadn’t come down. The plane thus made a hard landing on the belly of its fuselage, but it came to a stop and no one was injured.
The successful belly-landing has amazed many, not least those working in the tower who hadn’t been warned that anything was wrong. “They (the pilot and the other person on board) say they didn’t know the landing gear wasn’t down,” airport director Leif Lorentzen told state broadcaster NRK. “It didn’t function and the plane is just parked on the runway.”
It was described as a two-motor Beech King Air B200 owned by aviation firm Air Wing. It was on assignment for the Stavanger University Hospital, carrying a cargo of radioactive isotoper for use in the PET scanner at the hospital. “The box was lying inside the plane in a satchel,” clinic director Hans Tore Frydnes told NRK. He said it wasn’t damaged and was transported quickly to the hospital: “The airport organized that well and our patient received treatment on time.”
The incident prompted a major emergency response. A mobile crane was called in to remove the aircraft from the runway. Norway’s accident investigation board also launched an immediate probe into the cause of the unusual landing, while the airport’s east-west runway was open for traffic.