8/19/2014

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Small plane takes down power lines while landing in corn field

Small plane takes down power lines while landing in corn field

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) - A homemade airplane took down a power line as it crashed in a corn field Saturday afternoon. Kern County officials said that the two people on board managed to get out safely before it caught fire.

Kern County fire and sheriff's deputies responded to a report of a light plane down at around 12:30 p.m. Saturday off Old River Road and Bear Mountain Boulevard.

Officials said that John Madonna, 56, of San Luis Obispo and Shilo Staib, 42, of Bakersfield, received minor injuries when the homemade aircraft they were flying crashed in a corn field.

Both refused medical aid from ambulance personnel dispatched to the scene.

The NTSB and FAA have been notified of the crash and will investigate, according to Lt. Todd Bishop with the Kern County Sheriff's Office. He said the plane had no connection to the farm.

"Just someone on a recreational flight who hit some power lines and crashed," the lieutenant said.

Nearly 400 PG&E customers temporarily lost power because of the downed power line. Crews restored service several hours later.

Highway 223 was closed down while emergency personnel handled the crash.

"The corn is green," said Bishop. "Otherwise the situation could have been much worse."

In addition to fire and sheriff's personnel, officers from the California Highway Patrol also responded and controlled traffic in the area.

Investigators are still trying to find out what caused the crash.

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