A King Air 200 / FILE PHOTO
A Vietnam Air Services Company (VASCO) turboprop aircraft on a technical mission skidded off the runway after its landing gear did not work in the Central Highlands Province of Dak Lak Monday, but there were no casualties.
The emergency landing by the King Air aircraft shut down Buon Ma Thuot Airport for nearly three hours.
Vietnam Airlines, which owns VASCO, said the aircraft with three pilots and six flight management experts left Da Lat and was about to land at around 4:20 p.m. when its landing gear failed to extend.
The crew asked for permission to make an emergency landing.
Buon Ma Thuot airport authorities ordered a shutdown and dispatched firefighters and rescue workers to the landing spot.
Speaking to Thanh Nien, the aircraft's captain, Nguyen Ngoc Chan, said they were "lucky" because a fire could have broken out when the plane slid on the runway.
According to Vietnam Airlines, the 24-year-old aircraft was on a mission to check transmission signals from ground control stations at several airports.
Its last regular maintenance was done in August.
Aviation agencies are investigating the cause.
Last month a Vietnam Airlines ATR-72 lost its front tire while taking off in the northern city of Hai Phong. The loss was not noticed until after it landed safely in the central city of Da Nang.
The tire was found four days later in a field near Hai Phong airport.
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