Hyderabad: It was a horrific sight for Hyderabad. A Navy plane taking part in an air show freefell in seconds, nosediving from the sky straight into a three-storey building in Bowenpally, a residential area near Hyderabad's Begumpet airport. (Watch: The mangled remains of the plane)
Both pilots Commander S K Maurya and Rahul Nair were killed. Four people were injured.
"The co-pilot tried to eject but I don't know if he had enough reaction time. Or the parachute did not open because it did not have sufficient height and he died right near the crash site. The pilot's body was found on top of the building where the aircraft crashed," said A K Khan, Hyderabad police commissioner.
The aircraft that crashed was a Kiran MK-II aircraft belonging to the 'Sagar Pawan' aerobatic team of the Navy. (Read: What is Navy's Sagar Pawan?) It was performing the final loop of the 'Downward Bomb Burst' manoeuvre when it started freefalling. The air show was part of the inaugural ceremony for the India Aviation Summit.
The building that was hit went up in flames but did not collapse. Eyewitnesses say that because the aircraft crashed into a water tank on top of the building, the fire was controlled. "There was a big sound and we came. There was a mother and son. They jumped from the window and her leg was fractured. We moved her to safety," says an onlooker. (Watch: Eyewitnesses describe the crash)
Seconds after the plane hit the building in the heart of the city, a loud explosion was heard, and a cloud of smoke surrounded the area. Two fire engines and thirty fire-fighters were rushed to the location. But the narrow streets and the crowd of onlookers made rescue operations tough.
Also Read/Watch:Government statement on crash: Read here
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Eyewitness video of Hyderabad crash
First Pics: Plane crash at Hyderabad airshow