TV networks broke away from programming and over to their political reporters flying with Donald Trump’s running mate Gov. Mike Pence after Pence’s plane hydroplaned while landing at New York’s LaGuardia Airport this evening.
The plane experienced a very hard landing and the back it fish-tailed, as the plane went into a skid situation, according to witnesses. Once the plane came to a halt, off the runway, Pence came back into the cabin to make sure reporters were OK. No one on board was hurt, nor is the airplane.
The plane flew in from a rally in Iowa; Pence was supposed to attend a closed-door fundraiser scheduled for 7 PM ET in downtown Manhattan. One reporter said there was a lot of turbulence as they were landing and the plane hit the runway hard, jolting everyone on the plane, after which it seemed to careen out of control for about 20 seconds and come to a sudden halt in the grass off the runway.
New York is experiencing rains in close-to-freezing weather, creating a slippery runway, and the area is experiencing relatively high winds, according to reporting. CNN’s aviation expert Miles O’Brien said on air that “you don’t go into LaGuardia in a driving rain in a 737.” LaGuardia is considered one of the more challenging airports as the runways are short; O’Brien said the runways are 7,000 feet long there.
The torn-up runway that some reporters noted may have saved their lives, O’Brien told CNN’s Anderson Cooper. The LaGuardia runways, have a thin veneer of concrete and are designed to break apart, because the airport has to handle fast aircraft coming in on short runways, he said. “They’re designed to break apart on weight of landing gear, which stops the aircraft from going further,” O’Brien said. “If not, it’s likely the plane would be in the East River.”