Three die as plane hits Tokyo suburb
A small plane crashed into a quiet neighbourhood in Tokyo yesterday, killing the pilot, a passenger and a woman on the ground, while three people were pulled alive from the wreckage, officials said.
The single-engine propeller plane ploughed into and set ablaze a row of houses just minutes after taking off from an airport used by small aircraft in Tokyo's western suburb of Chofu.
Television footage showed a mangled plane resting on a crushed car in a residential area as dozens of firefighters battled the blaze and treated the victims.
Tokyo Fire Department spokesman Teruaki Seki said the dead included the pilot, one of the four passengers and a woman who was inside the house where the plane crashed into, setting it ablaze.
Five others, including the three remaining passengers and two people on the ground, were taken to hospitals, but their conditions are not known.
The plane was operated by a private company and used for aviation training and other activities, and not for commercial air travel.