EUGENE, Ore. -- Two days after a scary situation involving a small plane crash, operations at the Eugene Airport are back to normal.
Flights were all on time today as the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) continues to investigate why a small Cessna’s cabin filled with smoke and was forced to land without nose landing gear. The incident forced the airport’s only runway to shut down, leading to flights being delayed. Andrew Martz, communication development manager, said this was a reminder of the importance of having two working runways.
“I don’t anticipate the two hours where we didn’t have a runway, so obviously that created a few delays,” Martz said. "So, having the second runway is always a nice option.”
Currently the main runway of the airport is closed so construction crews can update taxiways to comply with new Federal Aviation Administrations (FAA) regulations. The new taxiways will be re-designed so planes have to make a 90 degree turn off the runway when they land.
The FAA made this change so planes will be forced to go slower as the exit the runway leading to safer arrivals. The construction started back in July but Martz said the end is in sight.
“Construction is going as planned so we’re still on track to finish our construction in around 30 days from now,” Martz said.
Once construction is complete stress will be relieved from the second, shorter runway.
Despite having only runway open, Martz said he is pleased with how quickly the runway was able to be reopen to aircraft.
“I think we’re just really proud of the response to the incident yesterday with the private aircraft,” Martz said. “Everyone did their jobs in a really efficient and fast manor and most importantly the pilot was safe.”