Plane lands on Highway 97 near Prince George

Pilot safely makes emergency landing on a highway

A pilot who caused an unusual traffic hazard in northern British Columbia after safely making an emergency landing on a highway initially had some trouble getting the plane airborne again.

RCMP Cpl. Craig Douglass says the pilot of the single-engine Cessna 172 made the emergency landing Wednesday on Highway 97 about 50 kilometres north of Prince George.

It was snowing at the time and when RCMP learned of the incident the pilot had already landed safely and steered his aircraft to a paved area off the highway so the road was not blocked.

But Douglass says the RCMP turned down the man’s request to close Highway 97 so he could take off when the weather cleared.

Douglass says highway officials also rejected the request due to concerns about liability.

In the meantime, the Transportation Department’s online route-planning service issued a tweet advising drivers to use caution because the plane was a visual distraction at the side of the road.

A ministry official says the pilot was able to take off late Wednesday without incident or the assistance of police or highways workers.

The Canadian Press

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