Representational image of a runway Aviapassion/Wikimedia Commons

A flight lost its door mid-air but still managed to land safely at Buffalo Niagara International Airport in New York on Monday.

The plane lost "the left rear passenger door" reportedly around 5:30 PM as it flew over Cheektowaga, a few miles south of the airport. The incident happened with a small plane - a single-engine Diamond DA40 – which had two people on board, according to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

The pilot informed the air traffic controllers, "We have an emergency; we're heading back", according to an audio recording received by some of the local media outlets. When the pilot was asked to confirm the nature of the emergency, the pilot responded: "We lost our rear door."

As the flight landed safely, there was neither any injury nor property damage on the ground, according to police in the Buffalo suburb of Cheektowaga, who received an emergency call from the airport around 6:00 PM. Police officers searched for the door but did not immediately spot it and it remains to be missing as of Tuesday morning, as per reports in the local media.

"A small plane carrying two people reported losing a door to the plane while flying over the area of Stiglmeier Park in Cheektowaga. Officers searched the area but were unable to locate the door," the police said in a statement.

A spokesperson for Buffalo International Airport said that the plane, operated privately, successfully took off from the airport in New York but when it was just 10 minutes into the flight, the door blew off, forcing the pilot to immediately turn back, reported USA Today.

The authorities have urged the residents of the area to contact the Cheektowaga Police Dispatch at 716-686-3500 if they have any information about the plane door.

It has also been reported that the FAA will be conducting a thorough investigation into the incident and the Cheektowaga Police will assist them with any requests they make.

There have been quite a few safety-related issues in the airline industry in recent days. On Feb. 9, a private jet crashed into a Florida highway as the pilot attempted to make an emergency landing, killing two people. Just moments before the incident, the pilot calmly told an airport controller that the aircraft, which had five people on board, "was not going to make the runway" since it had lost both engines.

Earlier this month, a flight carrying 179 passengers swerved off the runway before re-entering the same airstrip to taxi to the gate in Vilnius, Lithuania. An easyJet flight had a precariously close call as it was "seconds away" from crashing into Lake Geneva on November 5, 2023.