A woman escaped unscathed when a small
plane crashed into a house and started a
The aircraft, piloted by 81-year-old Gerald
Clayton, crashed shortly after takeoff and
slammed into the back of a house in a
subdivision of Indiana, just south of
Columbus Municipal Airport, said police
Lt Matt Myers.
Mr Clayton and passenger Dennis King, 60,
had already got out of the aircraft when
police arrived and Lt Myers spoke to one of
Smoke was visible acoss the city. Pic: Clifford
"He knew he was fortunate to be alive. He
was concerned about his buddy," Lt Myers
Both men, who suffered burns, cuts and
abrasions, were able to walk to ambulances
unaided after the crash, neighbours said.
Hiroko Nakao, who lived in the house, told
Indianapolis television stations that she was
home on her own when the plane struck the
rear of her property, destroying a sun room
and shattering windows.
She fled uninjured and called her husband at
"I don't believe it. I think it's a joke but
she's very serious, so I came home
suddenly," her husband, Tadashi Nakao, told
The crash occurred around 9.30am in a well-
manicured neighbourhood about a mile from
the city's airport, Indiana State Police Sgt
Noel Houze said.
Witnesses said they saw the plane flying
extremely low and that its engine did not
sound normal just before the crash.
"He was losing altitude and I thought, 'He's
going to crash,"' Joe Andrew, who was
washing his car in his driveway when he
noticed the plane, told The Associated Press.
Neighbour Marion Clavin told WTHR-TV that
he was inside his house when he heard two
booms. When he went outside, he saw one
person who had climbed out of the plane.
"He was bleeding and he was on fire. I told
him, 'Roll on the grass, roll on the grass!"' Mr
He added that the man told him the pilot
had already escaped the wreckage.
The plane involved is a Glastar GS-1 kit plane
registered to Mr Clayton of Columbus,
according to Federal Aviation Administration
FAA records list Mr Clayton as a private pilot
since 2004, and as a repairman and builder
of experimental aircraft.
Larry Ruble, 63, lives across the street from
the crash scene and said he knows the pilot.
"He's a great guy. He built it himself and it's
been up in the air a lot," Mr Ruble said.