Haiti Relief Plane Hits House


All three people aboard a Mexican-registered Piper PA-46 Mirage loaded with relief supplies for Haiti survived when the aircraft clipped a house in Clearwater, Fla., broke into two pieces and caught fire Sunday morning. Six people in the house weren’t hurt. Police say pilot Ernesto Gonzales, 48, and passengers Charles Uslander, 54, and Daisy Schneider, 16, were taken to hospital but their injuries were not believed to be life-threatening. The accident occurred about 10:15 a.m. just after the aircraft took off from Clearwater Air Park.

Dennis Roper, the chairman of the air park’s advisory board, told the St. Petersburg Times the plane arrived from Mexico on Friday and took on 96 gallons of fuel plus the relief supplies before taking off Sunday. It failed to gain altitude on takeoff and hit trees and a power pole before bouncing off the roof of the house and breaking into two pieces in the backyard.