Pilot rescued from plane stuck in wires
The pilot of a small plane was rescued after being entangled in wires for two hours.
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(CNN) -- A single-engine plane trying to land in a thunderstorm nose-dived into utility wires on Milwaukee's east side Saturday night, where it remained entangled for hours while the pilot was rescued, police said.
Police spokeswoman Anne Schwartz said the injuries of the 37-year-old pilot were not life-threatening, although he had some "pretty good bumps and cuts." He was recovering at a Milwaukee hospital, and his name was being withheld until relatives were notified, she said.
He was the sole occupant. No injuries were reported on the ground.
Schwartz said the pilot was being tested for the possible presence of alcohol or drugs. The Federal Aviation Administration was also investigating.
She said the plane reached Lawrence J. Timmerman Airport in northwest Milwaukee at 6:10 p.m. (7:10 p.m. ET), but was unable to touch down because of the storm. The plane crashed into the power lines in an alley five minutes later, she said.
Firefighters removed the pilot by smashing the plane's windshield, said fire department spokesman Joe Hegeman Jr. He said the pilot didn't say anything to rescuers.
The crash knocked out electricity to area homes, and utility crews from We Energies were on the scene. In a taped message, the utility said it did not know when power would be restored.
Schwartz said police received the call about the plane at 6:18 p.m. Several homes were evacuated as a precaution. In an elaborate operation, police were able to disentangle the plane from the power lines.
The accident occurred about one-half mile west of Lake Michigan.
"We saw the plane coming down, and when it came down it crashed into the wire pole and all the wires split in half. Everybody started running over here," said a woman who lives nearby. She said it sounded "like two cars were crashing into each other."
Another woman said it appeared that the pilot was trying to maneuver the plane to miss hitting homes.
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