Aspen airport reopens late Monday night after private jet goes off runway
A departing business jet that skidded off the end of the Aspen airport runway late Monday morning closed the facility for roughly nine hours.
No one was injured in the accident and it was not clear what caused the plane to end up in the snow at the north end of the runway, said Dan Bartholomew, Aspen-Pitkin County airport director.
Officials sent an update at 8:45 p.m. that the aircraft was “moved to a staging area where the NTSB and FAA will further investigate the cause of the incident.”
Bartholomew said he didn’t know how many people were on board the plane, which appeared to be a Hawker 800 business jet, which has a maximum capacity of eight passengers. The airplane ended up on airport property.
No flights were able to land or depart after the jet crashed, which occurred about 11:30 a.m.
As of 5:30 p.m., Pitkin County officials still anticipated that the airport would be closed “several” more hours, according to a news release. Into the evening, a large crane could be seen lifting the plane out of its icy, snowy resting spot. The wings were removed from the fuselage before it was hoisted out of the snow.
The incident occurred at the end of the busy Presidents Day Weekend and disrupted travel plans for many Aspen visitors.
According to the website FlightAware, the jet is owned by Roper Aviation LLC and was heading to Austin, Texas.
The airport will resumee normal operations on Tuesday, officials said late Monday. For updates on flights Tuesday, travelers should check with the airlines or AspenAirport.com.
This year’s Jazz Aspen Snowmass’ winter schedule will include five weekends of JAS Café performances taking place at The Little Nell and Here House, along with two weekends of JAS After Dark concerts at Sterling Aspen.