American Airlines Jet Goes Off Runway In Jackson Hole
An American Airlines Boeing 757 with 175 passengers and six crew members went off the runway just before Noon today (12/29) in Jackson, Wyoming. No one was injured. Jackson had received about seven inches of snow since last night, and light snow was falling at the time of the accident.
JACKSON, Wyo. — An American Airlines jet went past the end of a snowy runway while landing at Wyoming's Jackson Hole Airport on Wednesday, but no one was injured and the plane was not damaged, officials said.
Airline spokesman Ed Martelle said Flight 2253 from Chicago "had a long rollout" when it landed at 11:37 a.m. Wednesday. The plane came to rest on a hard surface and did not go off into grass or brush, he said.
There were 175 passengers, two pilots and four flight attendants on board the Boeing 757, Martelle said.
Ray Bishop, director of the Jackson Hole Airport, said Wednesday that there were no injuries and no damage to the airplane, which he said went into deep snow 658 feet past the end of the runway. That distance included a 300-foot paved safety apron and 358 feet of dirt beyond that.
Light snow was falling when the plane landed, with visibility at about 1.5 miles, Bishop said. The runway had some snowy patches, but its surface afforded good braking friction, he said.
Martelle said airline officials were trying to determine why the plane went off the runway.
Speaking in a conference call that began at about 1:30 p.m., Bishop said it might take an additional hour to reopen the airport and flights were being diverted elsewhere. "As you know, this is a very busy time of year for us," Bishop said. "The snow's fantastic at the ski resort."
The National Weather Service said Jackson Hole had received about 7 inches of snow since midnight.
Airport officials brought stairs to the plane so passengers could exit, and crews used bulldozers to pull the airliner back onto the runway.
The airport's only runway is 6,400 feet long, which Bishop said is a little shorter than normal for airports handling commercial flights. Another airplane went off the end of the runway last month, and such events happen periodically there, he said.
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