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2 walk away from fiery small plane crash in NJ

(AP) - Two men ferrying medical specimens walked away from a fiery small-plane crash Friday morning at an airport, and emergency responders found them at a nearby bus stop, alert and conscious, but badly

News 12 Staff

Aug 21, 2009, 11:57 PM

Updated 5,449 days ago

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(AP) - Two men ferrying medical specimens walked away from a fiery small-plane crash Friday morning at an airport, and emergency responders found them at a nearby bus stop, alert and conscious, but badly burned.
Both men were taken to St. Barnabas Medical Center. The pilot, identified as George Maddox, 54, of Sinking Springs, Pa., was listed in critical condition. Co-pilot Sanil Gopinath, 42, ofLaurel, Md., was listed in serious condition.
Little Ferry police officer Adam Warne, who was among the first to respond to the scene, said he was taken aback to find the men alive and talking after the crash the airport in Teterboro.
Warne said one man was "severely burned." Little Ferry Police Chief Ralph Verdi said Maddox had burns over 20 percent to 30 percent of his body.
The plane was carrying blood specimens for Quest Diagnostics when it crashed just after 3 a.m., police said.
The aircraft carries medical specimens to a lab at Teterboro that serves the New York metropolitan area, said Quest Diagnostics Gary Samuels.
He said the flight originated in Reading, Pa., at 10:44 p.m. Thursday and made stops in Hartford, Conn., Norwood, Mass., and Pottstown, Pa., before heading to Teterboro.
The twin-engine Beechcraft Baron ended up in a grassy area near the parking lot of a warehouse on Route 46.
According to National Transportation Safety Board investigator Robert Gretz, the plane was cleared to land on Runway 1 of the airport's two runways. But the pilot aborted the landing to try a so-called "go-around." He was able to gain some altitude and was crossing Route 46 when he hit a tree and crashed.
The plane landed upright and burst into flames, but the pilots were able to crawl out on their own.
There was no distress call from the pilots, whom are expected to survive, he said.
NTSB will issue a preliminary report in five days.
Teterboro is the same airport where a plane took off earlier this month before colliding with a sightseeing helicopter over the Hudson River. Nine people were killed aboard the two aircraft.
In 2005, a corporate jet went off the runway at Teterboro, crashed through a fence and crossed a highway before smashing into a warehouse. Twenty people were injured.
For extended coverage of the crash, go to Channel 612 on your iO Digital Cable Box and select iO Extra.


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