Airplane Skids Off Pellston Airport Runway

Snowy conditions may have been a factor in a plane skidding off a runway at a Northern Michigan airport.

A Delta flight from Detroit was landing at the Pellston airport around 11:00 p.m. Sunday night when it skidded about 50 to 100 feet off the runway.

Dan Wickham was on board the plane Sunday night when it landed at the Pellston airport. He says once the plane touched down on the runway, it wasn’t slowing down as fast as it usually does.

“It came in, he tried braking and clearly the braking was not doing a heck of a lot, and right at the end he shifted into reverse thrust.  When the reverse thrust came on there was a huge amount of snow everywhere, you looked outside you couldn’t see anything and that’s when suddenly, bang, we just came to a rather abrupt stop,” said Wickham.  

He says everyone on board remained calm through the landing, even after the plane came to a stop off the runway.

“I was actually in the very front seat and the flight attendant was sitting with her face towards the back and her comment to me was, ‘well that was interesting wasn’t it’ and I smiled and said, ‘you know that was pretty exciting,” said Dan.  

While the NTSB and FAA investigate what caused the plane to skid, the airport manager says he’s thankful no one was hurt.

“They’ll look at conditions and I’m sure they’ll have interviews with the pilot and take all the information they can get and then try and make a determination. That’s the most important thing, as long as nobody is hurt and that’s the first thing you try to make sure where you’re at with that situation, we can deal with the rest,” said Kelley Atkins.