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lucky escape for pair as light aircraft crashes

TWO men escaped with minor injuries after their light aircraft crashed.

The accident happened at 4.45pm yesterday near Birr Airfield on the Roscrea Road, Co Offaly.

The two, a man in his 60s and a younger man, according to gardai, were able to walk from the scene to waiting ambulances.

"We used a spinal board on one of them as a precaution," one of the rescuers said.

It is believed the aircraft, a Samba XL light sport, had flown from Abbeyshrule, Co Longford, and was landing at the time of the accident.

The two injured men were taken to the Midland Regional Hospital in Tullamore.

Emergency services, including the gardai, air ambulance and fire services rushed to the scene.

A team from the Dublin-based Air Accident Investigation Unit from the Department of Transport went to the accident site, where they took over the investigation.



Last November, two men were killed when their small aircraft crashed into a field a short distance from Birr Airfield during a training flight.

Flying instructor Niall Doherty (31), from Ballinakill, Roscrea, and trainee pilot Damien Deegan (31), from Crinkle, died in the accident.