Flights in and out of the Douglas Charles Airport are expected to resume later today following a crash landing of a twin-engine commercial aircraft on Monday.
At about 12:30 pm on Monday April 8, 2019, it was reported that a Sky High aviation Jetstream 41 aircraft with registration marks HL1038 landed at the Douglas Charles Airport (DCA) utilizing runway 27 from the sea end.
A report released on Tuesday says the aircraft touched down about 135 feet from the threshold markings and the left landing gear collapsed soon after landing.
It said the aircraft veered towards the left side of the runway and the other landing gear collapsed.
The aircraft then stopped in the grass area between the taxiways B and A.
The report says a small fire on the aircraft was quickly extinguished by Government’s Fire Services.
The three (3) crew members and the twenty-nine (29) passengers exited the aircraft and were escorted to the airport terminal for further medical examination.
No major injuries were recorded at that time, the report indicated.
The report also said the Eastern Caribbean Civil Aviation Authority (ECCAA) was notified by Dominica Air and Sea Port Authority within minutes of the accident, in keeping with ECCAA procedures.
Given the position of the aircraft between taxiway A and B and the proximity to the runway, the ECCAA officials in Antigua advised that Douglas Charles Airport remains closed until they have completed their investigation.
Efforts were made to have the ECCAA officials arrive on island Monday April 8, 2019, however, due to circumstances beyond their control ECCAA could only arrive on island on the morning of Tuesday April 9, 2019.
The report read; “We expect that once ECCAA officials give the all clear, normal Airport operations will resume, hopefully by early afternoon on Tuesday April 9, 2019. DASPA will continue to monitor the situation and advise the general public accordingly.”
“We are aware that travel plans have been disrupted as a result of the accident and the delay in the reopening of the Airport for normal operations.”
“However, every accident needs to be investigated by the OECS regulatory authority (ECCAA) whose headquarters are in Antigua.”
“Therefore, we ask for the patience of the travelling public and urge the public to remember that safety comes first.”
The Ministry of Public Works, Water Resource Management and Ports, and DASPA expressed gratitude to the Fire Services for their swift action in extinguishing the small fire as well as the management and staff of Douglas Charles Airport and other agencies for their support in a very challenging situation.
It said, “We are indeed thankful that despite the damage to the aircraft, the passengers and crew walked out of the aircraft without any visible injuries.”