Broken part of landing gear kept front wheels from working for Charlotte plane landing: NTSB

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Wednesday, July 12, 2023
Delta airplane lands in Charlotte without properly working front landing gear
An airplane made an unusual landing at Charlotte Douglas International Airport on Wednesday morning when its landing gear failed to work properly.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WTVD) -- A fractured mechanism is being blamed for the emergency landing of a Delta airplane in Charlotte on June 28.

The plane landed at Charlotte Douglas International Airport without it's front landing wheels deployed.

None of the 104 passengers and crew members were injured, and in fact many of them reported that the landing was surprisingly smooth.

A preliminary report from the National Transportation Safety Board explained that the landing gear failed to deploy and a warning light came on during the plane's descent. Pilots tried to troubleshoot the issue in various ways according to standard procedure--including trying to manually deploy the front landing gear multiple times.

None of the workarounds to deploy the front landing gear worked, so the decision was made to land the plane without the landing gear.

The pilots carefully lowered the aircraft onto the runway; the nose touched down with the plane going around 90 miles per hour.

When the plane came to a complete stop, crew members continued safety checks and used the emergency slides to evacuate all passengers.

Investigators determined the upper lock link in the landing gear system had broken and swung down to a position where it was blocking the nose landing gear from opening properly.