Plane makes emergency landing on Virginia highway

(Reuters) – A small commercial plane with seven people on board made an emergency landing on a Virginia highway on Friday after taking off from Dulles International Airport, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration said.

Nobody was injured, WUSA9 television reported, citing police and the airline.

Southern Airways Express flight 246 was on its way to Lancaster Airport in Pennsylvania when it made a hard landing on Route 606, said the FAA, which is investigating the cause.

“The pilot was able to safely land the plane in the roadway without striking any vehicles. The only damage that occurred was to the guardrail off the right side of the Parkway,” Virginia State Police said, according to WUSA9.

Dulles, one of the major airports serving Washington, D.C., said in a statement that it remained open for takeoffs and landings.

Southern Airways CEO Stan Little said in a statement the airline was relieved that nobody was injured and that it was cooperating with investigators, according to WUSA9.

“We are thankful to our pilots, who did exactly what they were trained to do – to put the safety of our passengers first,” the statement said.

(Reporting by Daniel Trotta, Editing by Rosalba O’Brien)