Malfunctioning landing gear spurs St. George airport runway closure, 3 SkyWest flight cancellations

A mechanical malfunction on a chartered Cessna Citation aircraft that landed at the St. George Regional Airport resulted in a 10-hour closure of the airport’s runway and the cancellation of three SkyWest Airlines flights, St. George, Utah, April 2, 2016 | Photo courtesy of Photo courtesy of Airport Operations Supervisor Brad Kitchen, St. George News

ST. GEORGE – A mechanical malfunction on a chartered aircraft attempting to land at the St. George Regional Airport Saturday resulted in a 10-hour closure of the airport’s runway and the cancellation of three SkyWest Airlines flights.

A mechanical malfunction on a chartered Cessna Citation aircraft that landed at the St. George Regional Airport resulted in a 10-hour closure of the airport’s runway and the cancellation of three SkyWest Airlines flights, St. George, Utah, April 2, 2016 | Photo courtesy of Operations Supervisor Brad Kitchen, St. George News
A mechanical malfunction on a chartered Cessna Citation aircraft that landed at the St. George Regional Airport resulted in a 10-hour closure of the airport’s runway and the cancellation of three SkyWest Airlines flights, St. George, Utah, April 2, 2016 | Photo courtesy of Operations Supervisor Brad Kitchen, St. George News

A Cessna Citation N819QS, belonging to Direct Jet, inbound from Salt Lake City, landed at the St. George airport at approximately 1:30 p.m., said Brad Kitchen, the airport’s operations supervisor.

“Upon landing at St. George, the brakes locked up due to mechanical malfunction,” Kitchen said. “The aircraft skidded both left and right main gears approximately 2,000 feet before the tires blew and rims skidded to a stop.”

The pilot of the aircraft had no advance warning as the mechanical malfunction became evident upon landing, Kitchen said.

Airport Fire Rescue AR-21 responded to the scene along with Airport Operations staff, Kitchen said, and reported seeing “hot wheels with a small amount of smoke.”

Fire crews stood by while aircraft was evacuated. Passengers were led to the Above View FBO & Jet Center where they were picked up, Kitchen said. No injuries were reported as a result of the incident.

Kitchen issued several Federal Aviation Administration NOTAMs – Notice to Airmen – closing runway 19 at 1:30 p.m., he said, before reopening the runway at approximately 11:30 p.m.

A mechanical malfunction on a chartered Cessna Citation aircraft that landed at the St. George Regional Airport resulted in a 10-hour closure of the airport’s runway and the cancellation of three SkyWest Airlines flights, St. George, Utah, April 2, 2016 | Photo courtesy of Operations Supervisor Brad Kitchen, St. George News
A mechanical malfunction on a chartered Cessna Citation aircraft that landed at the St. George Regional Airport resulted in a 10-hour closure of the airport’s runway and the cancellation of three SkyWest Airlines flights, St. George, Utah, April 2, 2016 | Photo courtesy of Operations Supervisor Brad Kitchen, St. George News

“With both tires blown, the rims damaged, and the brake calipers damaged,” he said, “it took this amount of time to remove the aircraft from the runway.”

The runway closure resulted in the cancellation of SkyWest Airlines’ outbound flight to Denver and two inbound flights from Salt Lake City, Kitchen said.

NOTAMS were later adjusted, he said, to allow small aircraft to depart on the remaining 5,000 feet of runway.

Airport personnel along with mechanics from Gama Aviation, of Las Vegas, worked through the night to remove the aircraft from the runway and get the runway open.

This report is based on preliminary information provided by law enforcement or other emergency responders and may not contain the full scope of findings.

St. George News Editor-in-Chief Joyce Kuzmanic contributed to this report.

Click on photo to enlarge it, then use your left-right arrow keys to cycle through the gallery. 

Email: kscott@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

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6 Comments

  • Bender April 4, 2016 at 12:36 pm

    Any landing you can walk away from….

  • Karl April 4, 2016 at 6:01 pm

    Seems the airport should invest in a couple of Go-jacks.

  • voice of reason April 4, 2016 at 6:06 pm

    They don’t have the capability to put it on rollers and tow it off the runway so it has to sit there for 10 hours? No one thought to run over to Tinks and buy a couple pairs or rolling jacks? St. George is pathetic.

    • Bender April 4, 2016 at 11:37 pm

      Yup, Voice and his brother-in-law Cleetus will get ‘er done for ya next time SGU. Couple a Harbor Freight specials and some elbow grease and that $10M Citation is outa the way.

  • .... April 4, 2016 at 10:59 pm

    Well I’m sure you can buy a Book of Mormon at the airport !

  • pappy May 6, 2016 at 2:50 pm

    Next time, Call Patroni (the late George Kennedy) 😉

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