The incident, which caused five aircraft to divert to other airports, occurred just before 10 p.m., when the pilot of a Castle Caravan C-208 was taxiing and turned too soon, riding off the paved surface, spokeswoman Michele Dynia said in a written statement.
Pavement conditions were within "acceptable" limits, Dynia said, but heavy snow throughout the evening reduced visibility. The stranded aircraft forced the runway to shut down, leaving only one runway open. The other planes were diverted while snow removal crews worked to keep that runway clear, she said. All five aircraft later returned to Hopkins.
CLEVELAND, Ohio — A small private plane went off the runway Wednesday night at Hopkins International Airport, closing a runway.
The pilot was the only person on the plane and was uninjured, airport spokeswoman Michele Dynia said.
The incident happened just before 10 p.m. Dynia did not have information on what type of plane was involved.
Heavy snow was falling at the time and there was low visibility, Dynia said, although she added that the runway's surface condition was "within acceptable limits." The airport was fined $735,000 last year by the Federal Aviation Administration, which said Hopkins did not have adequate staffing for snow removal and de-icing of runways.
The airport denied the FAA's accusations that low staffing created runway hazards but pledged to create a new plan for snow removal and to hire more snowplow operators.
The poor weather Wednesday night resulted in several commercial flights being diverted or delayed, according to the airport's website. Nearly 4 inches of snow fell at Hopkins on Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service.
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Cleveland-Hopkins International Airport (KCLE), Ohio