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Plane Crashes near Houses, Pilot Survives

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Roy, UTA horrific plane crash into a quiet Roy neighborhood Sunday critically injured the pilot and set two homes on fire—however, luckily, no one on the ground was injured. The December 6 issue of the Salt Lake Tribune described the ensuing fire caused by the crash and the horrifying injuries to the pilot.

"Flesh was just hanging from his face and hands," said Val Saunders, who was at a family birthday party about a block away when he heard the crash. "He was in a lot of pain. He had a lot of burns."

It appeared the pilot was the only person in the aircraft at the time of the airplane crash.

The Tribune reported the accident happened December 5. Fog had rolled in, but it has yet to be determined if the fog will be deemed as a contributor to the crash. The Cessna C210 6-seater was on approach to Ogden-Hinckley Airport when the aircraft began striking utility poles and trees.

The Cessna crashed into a cluster of trees between two houses that subsequently caught fire, generated by the 50-foot flames originating from the wreckage of the doomed plane. The Airplane Accident also took out a power transformer.

The Tribune reported that the pilot, as badly injured as he was, remained conscious as he lay in a street gutter. He told witnesses that he was from New Haven and was flying his aircraft home from Lake Powell when the crash occurred. The pilot, who was not identified in the news report, did not appear to know where he was. He did not indicate if there were other airplane crash victims involved.

The pilot was transported to the hospital by land ambulance as the fog was too thick for an air ambulance to fly safely. The man subsequently wound up at University Hospital, where he was being treated in the burn unit for critical injuries.

Witnesses at the scene indicated there was no need for the pilot to be pulled from the plane. "There was no plane left," Val Saunders said.

Plane crashes are not new to the Roy neighborhood, according to reports. Local resident Randy Bowden told the Tribune that a plane crashed two years prior, about a block from the current crash site.

"Those planes need to take off and land out of the north," Bowden said. "That whole end is open fields and highway. There's no reason they need to come over all these houses."

The Mayor of Roy, Joe Ritchie, noted that considering the thousands of takeoffs and landings at the airport, the neighborhood is pretty safe and the airport has a good safety record.

"The hazard goes with the territory and it's not unreasonable to expect that someday there's going to be an airplane crash. I guess we're just really fortunate that we don't have more crashes than we have," he said.

That's still little comfort for some of the neighbors, who still live in fear of plane crashes coming too close to home. Gerald Nichols told the Tribune that he and his wife "get a little nervous" when they go outside.


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