Small plane crashes into electricity tower in Maryland
A small plane crashed into a transmission tower in Maryland on Sunday, knocking out power to around 85,000 customers as rescuers rushed to extricate the two people on board who were trapped about 100 feet above the ground, authorities said.
The pilot and passenger, whose names have not been released by authorities, do not appear to be seriously injured, Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Department spokesman Pete Piringer said Sunday.
He said authorities had contact with the two people as the plane was hanging in the power lines and tower.
Mr. Piringer said the pilot and passenger were flying to Montgomery County Airpark, an airport near Gaithersburg, Maryland, about 40 miles west of Baltimore. The Federal Aviation Administration said the plane, a single-engine Mooney M20J, took off Sunday from Westchester County Airport in White Plains, New York.
It remains unclear what led to the accident, which happened in Montgomery Village, Maryland, around 5:40 p.m. and resulted in unusual photos of residents and officials on social media. Images and videos showed the plane entangled in power lines and apparently suspended in mid-air in a mess of metal.
At 7.30pm, Mr Piringer said crews were still working out how they were going to reach and save the two people. The first step, he said, would be to turn off the power.
“Once that’s disabled, we can get up there and pick them up,” Mr. Piringer said, adding, “I don’t know how they’re going to do it yet.”
Pepco, the Maryland energy company affected by the accident, said the Twitter that he was “awaiting clearance to proceed to the scene before crews could begin work to stabilize the electrical infrastructure and begin to restore service.”
Mr Piringer said power outages caused by the accident led to problems such as blocked lifts and faulty traffic lights on Sunday evening.