An Air Nelson Dash 8 Q300 was forced to make an emergency landing at New Zealand’s Blenheim Airport on February 9 after its nosegear failed to lock down in the extended position.
Forty-one passengers and three crew were on board the aircraft, which was operating a scheduled flight between Hamilton and Wellington, before diverting to Blenheim where the nosegear failed upon landing.
Fairfax reports that the Air New Zealand subsidiary’s aircraft “circled the airport at least four times before landing”. All passengers disembarked safely, while Air New Zealand made arrangements for either temporary passenger accommodation or transport to nearby Nelson Airport for a special flight to Wellington. The Q300 was subsequently moved off Blenheim’s runway as Air Nelson sought a special flight permit from manufacturer Bombardier and the New Zealand CAA to fly the aircraft to Nelson Airport for further inspection and repairs.
Initial reports suggest that the incident is unrelated to another Air Nelson Q300 nosewheel failure in September last year.