'It looked like the plane slid over one man'


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AFP

Destruction: Three people are still trapped inside a plane which crashed into a primary school fence near the Durban International Airport. Photo: Gcina Ndwalane, Daily News

Daily News reporters

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    The pilot of a South African Airlink twin engine light aircraft crash landed his plane in Merebank this morning, narrowly missing houses, as he steered the aircraft onto a vacant lot and slid through the concrete wall of a school in the densely populated suburb.

    Merebank lies very close to Durban International Airport.

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    Destruction: Three people are still trapped inside a plane which crashed into a primary school fence near the Durban International Airport. Photo: Gcina Ndwalane, Daily News

    AFP


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    The exact cause of the crash had not been confirmed early today, but a witness at the scene said it appeared the plane had taken off at around 8am, into the prevailing north-easterly wind.

    "It seems like he took off and something must have happened, forcing him to come down again," local resident Elvin Govender said from the scene.

    Logie Naidoo, said she noticed the low flying plane just after 8am. "We are used to planes flying low overhead but this was too low.

    "There was a very loud noise and the plane slid in between our houses through a vacant lot and into the school property," she said.

    Naidoo said a municipal worker who was cleaning the street at the time appeared to have been struck by the plane.

    "I was horrified, it looked like the plane slid over one man.

    "I started screaming and praying. It all just happened so quickly."

    Police battled to hold back a large crowd of residents, who rushed from their nearby homes to the school.


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