Aspen airport reopens after emergency vehicles respond to small airplane accident

Incident occurred late Sunday morning; runway resumed operations just past 1 p.m.

A collapsed front landing gear caused a small inbound aircraft to skid to a stop Sunday morning in the middle of runway 33 at the Aspen/Pitkin County Airport around 11:15 a.m., according to Caroline Bonynge, Director of Operations, Safety and Security for the airport.

Two passengers were on board the private plane but neither showed signs of immediate injury, Bonynge said.

“Both passengers did exit safely — there were no injuries,” Bonynge said.

The plane was towed from the runway at 12:40 p.m. and operations resumed shortly after 1 p.m. Sunday.

The aircraft, a single-engine Piper Malibu, sustained some damage in the accident. As of 12:45 p.m. Sunday, it was not yet clear what had caused the landing gear to collapse, Bonynge said.

Several emergency vehicles from the airport, the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office, the Aspen Ambulance District and the Aspen Fire Department responded to the scene, according to Bonynge.

“It was a great show of our mutual aid agreement,” she said of the response.

Several commercial flights were delayed due to a closure at the airport that lasted nearly two hours. The airport reopened and departures resumed at 1:01 p.m., Bonynge confirmed.

Travelers should check with their airlines or for updates on flight times.

Video courtesy of Elisha Zander.