Volvo driver pulls pilot from wreckage after plane crashes into car

Updated: 



The pilot of a light aircraft who collided with a Volvo at an Essex airfield was saved from the burning wreckage by the car's occupants.

Incredibly, the driver and passenger of the XC60 saw the plane heading for them as the pilot struggled to land his single-engine AT3 plane at North Weald Airfield, and made it out of the car before the aircraft burst into flames.

The quick-thinking pair pulled the pilot from the plane before fire engulfed the cockpit. He was rushed to hospital suffering from injuries to his face, back and legs.



A fire service spokesman said: "An onlooker who saw the incident told us that the plane appeared to come into land but immediately took off again, banking over the top of a hanger before coming back to try a second landing and clipping the back of a brand new Volvo with two people inside who were driving out of the airfield."

The fire might have been worse had it not been for the presence of a volunteer fire crew who were at the airfield to oversee a drag race.

Station officer Len Cleary told the BBC: "The pilot was lucky. It appears that the two people in the car brought him clear of the fire after the collision.

"It is not clear at this stage whether the incident was caused by mechanical failure or human error.

"The volunteer fire team acted swiftly to cover the scene with a blanket of foam so when we arrived the fire was under control."

The Air Accidents Investigation Branch has begun an inquiry into how the plane came down during its second attempt at landing.

(Picture courtesy of Essex County Fire and Rescue Service)