Two people injured after single-engine airplane crashes in Meriden
MERIDEN — Two people escaped with minor injuries after their plane crashed Saturday afternoon.
Police and EMS responded after a single-engine aircraft went down near 835 Hanover Road at about 4:15 p.m., just behind American Legion Post #45 and not far from Wilcox Technical High School.
According to officials, the airplane was in the vicinity of Meriden Markham Municipal Airport when it made an “unexpected landing,” and came crashing down.
Two victims, a pilot and passenger, were sent to an area hospital for treatment of non-life threatening injuries.
The 1967 Piper PA-28, manufactured over 50 years ago, is registered to a Wallingford man, although it is unclear if he was operating the plane at the time of the incident.
Several residents living in the area say they are always concerned about the potential for airplane crashes. The airport resides in close proximity to locations frequented by children, including a school, baseball fields, playgrounds and a go-kart track. Pilots tend to fly very low through the area, so they must take extreme care to avoid brushing or colliding with the abundance of thick, tall trees growing there.
“He was coming in low. I was like telling my girlfriend this guy is too low to be coming in. I figured he’d probably hit the school or something,” said Pat Charon of Meriden.
Mayor Kevin Scarpati said not far from Meriden Markham Municipal Airport where small planes are constantly seen taking off and landing, but he said for the plane to crash near a playground and a baseball field is unexpected.
Scarpati added the playground is typically filled with children and parents but with it being the winter now, no one was outside luckily.
“Pending on the weather and the wind, that type of thing will change the pattern at times but for decades, they’ve used these flight patterns. They’ve gone in, it all meets FAA regulations so by all means if there were problems, we would address it immediately,” said Scarpati.
Another neighbor on edge was April Legere; she said the planes fly closely to her home two to three times a day.
“Every once in awhile, I get the terrified feeling of them coming down and hitting our house or hitting neighbors’ houses,” said Legere of Meriden.
Sergeant Christopher Fry with the Meriden Police Department could not confirm the gender of the people inside the plane, but said the incident is not the worst he has seen.
“I think everyone’s lucky. It turned out pretty well in terms of the circumstances,” said Sergeant Fry.
Police said the FAA has been notified and will be leading the investigation to determine the cause of the crash. According to the FAA registry, the plane is registered under the name of someone from Wallingford. FOX61 has learned that the man the plane is registered to was involved in another plane crash in Virginia in July of last year. We have not yet been able to confirm whether that person was in the plane or not.