Silverstone Air Dash 8 Involved In Wheely Scary Incident Above Kenya

A Silverstone Air plane caused panic today when the wheel fell off during takeoff. You’d think that, with a wheel missing from the landing gear, the safest place to be would be in the air, but, as they say, what goes up, must come down. The Dash 8 landed safely, deplaning its four passengers and five crew at Eldoret International Airport.

Silverstone Air
A Silverstone Air Dash 8-300 lost a wheel on take off. Photo: Silverstone Air via Twitter

What happened?

The Bombardier Dash-8-300, registered 5YBWG, was scheduled to take passengers from Lodward airstrip in Turkana County to Nairobi earlier today. It had just four passengers and five members of crew on board. Upon taking off, the number three wheel assembly (the inside left one) became detached from the landing gear.

Although the aircraft took off safely, the wheel fell to the ground just outside the airport. Thankfully helpful locals were on hand to recover the wheel, delivering it by hand to the airport office. The local police department told the Nation,

“The wheel was collected by members of public several metres outside the airport. It was recovered and taken to airport’s managers office.”

While the flight crew may not have initially been aware of the situation, they were promptly alerted by ground staff, letting them know they needed to land the plane. Emergency services at Moi International Airport in Eldoret were placed on standby to receive the stricken aircraft.

Thankfully, around 45 minutes after takeoff, the Dash 8 landed safely in Eldoret. Passengers were unhurt but visibly shaken by the experience. The airline released a statement on Twitter in relation to the incident.

A spate of incidents

For Silverstone Air, things are beginning to look rather bleak. Just a couple of weeks ago, a Fokker 50 operated by the airline skidded off a runway in Nairobi. While nobody was hurt, the aircraft looked to be something of a wreck as a result.

Then, just yesterday, a story emerged about the same airline, in which one of its aircraft allegedly struck a smaller plane while maneuvering at Wilson Airport.

Under investigation

Unsurprisingly, Kenya’s civil aviation regulators have now launched a probe to see what’s going on at the carrier. The KCCA Director General Cpt Gilbert Kibe said today that the agency would be carrying out an immediate inspection and audit of the airline, as per the disclosure below.

Silverstone Air Dash 8 Involved In Wheely Scary Incident Above Kenya

According to reporting by Capital FM, Kibe said,

“As per the provision of Civil Aviation Act No. 21 of 2013, amended in 2016, KCAA is mandated to manage, regulate and operate a safe, secure and efficient Civil Aviation system in Kenya. The audit is being performed to determine the level of compliance with the current Civil Aviation regulations and their own company approved manuals and procedures.”