KUCB KIAL Unalaska Community Broadcasting

AVIATION

Courtesy of Aleutian Islands Photography

Grant Aviation says it wasn’t a mechanical problem that forced one its planes to belly flop at the Unalaska airport last month.

Beyond that, airline officials are keeping quiet about the accident’s cause -- at least for now.

“We’ve all got our theories," said Rob Kelly, Grant's chief financial officer. "But if we say something and the investigation concludes differently, that’s not a good position for us to be in.”

Chrissy Roes

In June, PenAir introduced a new type of aircraft to Unalaska, aiming to solve a longtime problem: Manufacturers don’t really make planes for this type of island.

Nine months later, the airline thinks it’s finally found the answer in the Saab 2000.

The high-speed turboprop has earned a 90 percent completion rate for flights between Unalaska and Anchorage.

Courtesy of Aleutian Islands Photography

A small airplane landed on its belly Tuesday at the Unalaska airport. No one aboard was injured, but the accident shut down the runway for about four hours. 

Returning from Akun Island, the Grant Aviation plane touched down without landing gear around 1:30 p.m., according to a statement by the Alaska State Troopers (AST).

The pilot and two passengers exited safely and declined medical attention. But the aircraft -- a Super King Air 200 -- sat on the runway with bent propeller blades for several hours before officials could bring a crane to move it.