WestJet plane slips off snowy tarmac in Kelowna, B.C.

Matt Coutts
Daily BrewJanuary 7, 2013

Heavy snowfall was causing travel mayhem in British Columbia's Okanagan Valley, with one aircraft slipping off the runway and tipping into a snow bank.

A WestJet plane bound for Edmonton slid off the tarmac at Kelowna International Airport amid a particularly heavy snowfall.

Passenger Jennifer Kelm told CBC News that the plane was about to be de-iced when it slipped into a snowbank.

"I can see the engine in the snow, just the bottom part touching the snow," she told the network while still on board the plane Monday morning.

In a statement posted on Facebook, WestJet said the nose wheel and two main gear wheels of the Boeing 737-700 aircraft slipped off the apron.

There were 134 passengers and six crew members on board, none of whom were injured. The passengers have been rebooked on other flights.

According to the statement:

Kelowna airport has had short intermittent closures of the runway due to heavy snowfall and limited visibility, and the airport is experiencing some delayed and cancelled flights.

According to A.J., who posted the above photo on Twitter, tow trucks arrived in the early afternoon to pull the plane out of the snow.

Environment Canada was warning the Kelowna area to expect about 15 centimetres of snow through the morning, with more expected in the afternoon. Driving conditions were described as treacherous in the area.

Kelowna International Airport reports six flights out of the city have been delayed by the weather Monday. Five arrivals have also been delayed and one morning flight from Edmonton was cancelled entirely.

(Photo posted by @AlliEvolution on Twitter)