It was sheer luck no one was using the ball fields at Wilcox Tech when the single engine Piper airplane fell out of the sky.
There were two men on board, one in his 30s who was able to walk away from the crash, and one in his 50s who was rescued by first responders. Both have non-life threatening injuries. Both were taken to the hospital.
Police said the pilots were practicing “Touch and Go’s”, where the pilot practices taking off and landing at nearby Meriden Markham Airport.
Witnesses say the plane’s engine stopped, and as it went down just before 7, it hit a set of high voltage power lines, knocking out power to half the city.
Crews are on the scene of a private airplane crash in Meriden, which affected two of our transmission lines and a nearby substation.
Currently, about 8k Meriden customers are without power – that number is down from 17k who originally lost service.— Eversource CT (@EversourceCT) April 12, 2019
Eversource said two of their electric transmission lines and a nearby substation were affected. Power was restored to all 17,000 customer affected by 4 a.m.
“My phone just blew up with my husband calling me from Waterbury, my friend that lives 5 minutes from here saying, ‘A plane crashed. Did you just hear a plane crashed?'” recalled Kaitlin Leidy, who lives near the crash site, but was shopping at the time of the crash. “So I got home, my entire neighborhood was without power.”
The FAA confims the plane was a Piper PA-28 model and that two people were on board. The FAA will investigate and the National Transportation Safety Board will determine the probable cause of the accident.
“Honestly, if you’re gonna crash, you crashed right,” Leidy said. “You landed in an empty field where there were no athletic activities going on. No one was injured, no house was taken out.”
According to the official schedule, Wilcox tech played a baseball game here yesterday afternoon, beating Goodwin Tech 15-0. If that game had gone longer, there could be have been a very different result.
Wilcox Tech High School was closed Friday. It was only scheduled for a half day.
News 8 will update this story as more information comes in.
Web Extra: Meriden Police gives an update: