Tue, Feb 05, 2019 - Page 4 News List

Five die after plane parts hit California house

AP, YORBA LINDA, California

Firefighters are pictured in front of a home in Yorba Linda, California, where parts of a small plane landed on Sunday, triggering a fire and killing five people.

Photo: AP

Five people died and two were injured on Sunday after a small plane apparently came apart, raining debris across a Southern California neighborhood and igniting a house fire before landing in a backyard, authorities said.

The male pilot, who was the only person in the twin-engine plane, and four people in the Yorba Linda house that caught fire died, Orange County Sheriff’s Lieutenant Cory Martino said at a news conference on Sunday night.

He says the deceased occupants of the home were two males and two females. No other identifying information such as names or ages was immediately released.

The Cessna 414A took off from the Fullerton Municipal Airport west of the blaze, US Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer said.

A two-story house burst into flames after being struck by the main cabin and one engine of the plane, sending panicked neighbors into the streets.

The second engine dislodged and fell onto the street, creating a large hole in the asphalt, according to Eliott Simpson, an aviation accident investigator with the US National Transportation Safety Board.

“It was a boom. It sounded like something exploded. It shook our house,” said John Wolbart, who lives a block away.

He said he ran to the burning house and saw a woman come out with singed hair.

Clint Langford, who lives 0.80km away, said he was in his living room when he heard a low rumbling.

“It’s the eerie, low rumbling sound that keeps getting lower and louder. It was scary,” he said. “And then all of a sudden boom. It shook the house.”

He looked out his front door and could see plane parts falling out the sky in the distance.

Video posted on Twitter showed panicked residents running to the house as it became engulfed in flames and dark smoke.

Aerial footage taken from news helicopters show plane parts, including side panels and a propeller, scattered on rooftops and driveways near the burned house.

Debris was scattered over four blocks, Simpson said.

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