Bit of a coincidence that two Air Nelson Q300s had emergency landings at New Zealand’s Blenheim Airport within five months of each other – both because of nose landing gear failures.
The latest incident occurred today, when a flight from Hamilton to Wellington diverted to Blenheim when the nose gear would not deploy. The Q300 made a successful landing without the nose gear, and the 41 passengers and three crew were not hurt.
In September last year, a very similar incident occurred with a Q300 at Blenheim Airport. Air New Zealand, which owns Air Nelson, says the initial engineering reports suggest that the two incidents are unrelated.
The Q300 from today’s incident was moved off the runway, and Air New Zealand says a special flight permit is being sought from Bombardier and the CAA to fly it to Nelson with landing gear locked in place. The carrier expects the aircraft will be moved within the next 36 hours.
Here’s a link to a short video of the incident, if you want to see what a Q300 looks like landing without nose gear.