Incredible rescue of a pilot and passenger left dangling over power lines for hours after small plane crash in Maryland

A pilot and passenger left dangling over power lines for hours after small plane crash in Maryland. Credit: Pete Piringer @mcfrsPIO/Twitter.

A pilot and passenger have been rescued after they were left dangling over power lines for hours after a small plane crashed in Maryland.

Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service Chief Scott Goldstein said that they had been rescued from the small plane early Monday morning, with both being taken to the hospital with serious injuries.

The incident was caught on Twitter by Pete Piringer, spokesman for the fire service, who posted images and updates as the rescue mission was underway.

He tweeted: “Small Plane Crash IAO Rothbury Dr & Goshen Road, plane into powerlines dangling a hundred feet in the air, pilot, and passenger trapped in plane.”

The rescue began at 5.30pm when crews responded to reports of a small airplane that had flown into the power lines. Upon arriving at the scene, the plane was found 100 feet in the air trapped in a tower.

The pilot was identified by Maryland State Police as Patrick Merkle, aged 65, of Washington, DC. The passenger is Jan Williams, aged 66 of Louisiana, reports CNN.

Updates continued to flood the social media account as the two people were rescued.

Mr Piringer added: “Update… plane crashed into powerlines, @mcfrs ‘high-angle rescue response … assisting small plane into Pepco tower and hanging 100 ft in the air, 2 occupants uninjured, large area of power outages.”

As the pilot and passenger were being rescued, he then confirmed that they were “ok” and that the plane had been heading towards Montgomery Airpark for landing.

“Update / small Plane crash into power lines in Gaithersburg area, plane, 2 occupants on plane are OK, plane was headed towards (landing) Montgomery Airpark, Airpark is now closed to air traffic,” he said.

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Vickie S
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Vickie Scullard

A journalist of more than 12 years from Manchester, UK, Vickie now lives in Madrid and works as a news writer for the Euro Weekly News.