Pilot seriously injured in ejection from plane crash at Brainard Airport
HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) - A pilot suffered serious injuries from a plane crash in Hartford over the weekend.
The Connecticut Airport Authority said that at around 3:45 p.m. on Saturday, a single-engine aircraft crashed shortly after take-off at Hartford-Brainard Airport.
The airport is a general aviation airport with smaller planes flying in and out.
“We usually see all of those little planes flying over head and we always a little nervous. We don’t want them to crash or anything,” said Gabriela Brown, an eyewitness.
The Hartford Fire Department said it was a four passenger prop plane that crashed on the turf runway.
“The plane is a Lancair, which is a kit plane. [It] could be built by the pilot. It’s a high performance airplane, which means it’s got a 350 horsepower engine. [It] goes very fast,” said Dr. Michael Teiger, longtime pilot, former Federal Aviation Administration medical examiner.
The pilot, only identified as a 54-year-old male, was the only occupant and was ejected.
The pilot was responsive on the scene, but suffered burns and possible fractures. He was transported to an area hospital.
Even after an accident, Teiger said most pilots wont let that stop them from flying again.
“I don’t see a real difference between an air traffic accident and a car accident on the highway. Most of us, if we were in an accident, we’d be shaken up, take a breather and usually get back and start driving again. And I think the same would be psychologically true for flying,” he said.
The FAA launched an investigation.
Officials do not know how much fuel was spilled. The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection was on the scene.
The airport was closed immediately following the crash, but has since reopened.
While traveling southbound on Interstate 91, Brown said she and her father saw a huge cloud of black smoke that came from the direction of the airport.
“First thing we thought was ‘did a plane crash?,’” she said. “To see it happen in front of us, just driving on our normal route, that was really shocking.”
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