One person killed, 19 injured
A CHARTER plane crashed into a factory near Wonderboom airport, Pretoria, shortly after take-off leaving one person dead and 19 injured.
It is believed that not all the injuries were of crew and passengers on the plane – belonging to Martin’s Air Charter – but that two, including one critical injury, were to people on the ground.
The call came through to emergency services shortly after 4pm that a plane had crashed near the Moloto Road in Kameeldrift East, and emergency vehicles battled to get to the site because of heavy traffic.
Helicopters could still be seen hovering above the scene as the sun set.
Curious motorists abandoned their cars and moved closer on foot to get a better look.
A witness said he saw quite a large plane bank low over another factory and its wing tip hit an electricity line. He then heard a loud bang as it hit the ground.
Images shared on social media showed flames and smoke billowing from the wreckage, with bits of engine and other debris scattered around the area.
The fuselage was split, with broken seats inside. It was unclear if that was from the crash or emergency services using jaws of life to extricate trapped passengers.
Johan Pieterse, spokesperson for Tshwane emergency services, confirmed one fatality and 19 injuries. Late into the evening officials remained on site, but Pieterse said the injured had all been taken to local hospitals.
He said he could not release more information as the South African Civil Aviation Authority was investigating the cause of the accident. He said it was one of the biggest plane crashes in his time.
MMC for Road and Transport, Sheila Lynn Senkubuge, was also on the scene on behalf of the mayor to offer support and trauma counselling.