NEW BERN, CRAVEN COUNTY - A landing gear malfunction forced a flight out of Craven County to turn around and land Friday morning.
U.S. Airways Flight 4303 was flying from Coastal Carolina Regional Airport in New Bern to Charlotte. But after takeoff, the Dash-8 prop plane's landing gear door did not retract, prompting the pilot to declare an emergency in the air, airport officials said. As a result, the flight was re-routed back to the airport.
Fifty passengers were on board the flight that departed at 7 a.m. They told NewsChannel 12 they were in flight for about an hour.
Passengers said they were a little nervous when the plane was descending.
"[I was] Very nervous," Jan Alden said. "I had my eyes on the ground so I was able to see the ground. I did not take my eyes off the ground. I watched us descend until that wheel hit the ground and then whew, sigh of relief."
Tom Braaten, the director of the airport, said he did not believe the passengers were in any real danger. Officials were working to fix the malfunction, Braaten added. There was no word on how future flights will be affected.
No injuries were reported. Passengers were re-booked to other flights.