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Passengers safe after UND plane malfunction

A UND plane with three people aboard landed safely Friday morning after a faulty switch told the pilot part of the landing gear was not down. Emergency crews responded to the Grand Forks International Airport after they received word a two-engine...

A UND plane with three people aboard landed safely Friday morning after a faulty switch told the pilot part of the landing gear was not down.

Emergency crews responded to the Grand Forks International Airport after they received word a two-engine, turboprop plane was having difficulty landing, said Chris Deitz, supervisor of aircraft rescue and firefighting at the Grand Forks Regional Airport Authority.

The first sign of trouble came around 10 a.m. Friday after the plane's control panel indicated part of the landing gear may not have been down, Deitz said.

Mechanics on the ground and in the control tower tried to see whether the plane's landing gear was loose during what is called a "fly-by," when the plane flies close by the airport, Deitz said.

The plane circled the airport while its occupants tried measures to manually lock the landing gear into position, Deitz said.

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Eventually, the pilot decided to land the plane and did so safely. No one was injured in the incident.

UND spokesman Peter Johnson confirmed the flight was a UND training flight.

He said there was nothing wrong with the landing gear. Rather it was a faulty signal that was showing the gear was not down.

Altru Health System, Grand Forks Fire Department, Grand Forks Airport Fire and Rescue and Grand Forks Police Department all responded to the incident, Deitz said.

Related Topics: AVIATION
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