NORTHGLENN, Colo. (CBS4) – A pilot who walked away from a suburban plane crash on Monday actually used to own the property he crashed into.
Brian Veatch formerly owned the home at 11067 Livingston Drive that has now been mostly reduced to a mess of charred wood with a small plane in the middle.
Veatch was flying the Piper single engine plane towards downtown at approximately 3:45 p.m. with an advertising banner when he started having trouble keeping the plane aloft. He released the banner and then went into a nosedive.
After crashing into the house Veatch was able to get out of the plane and search for anyone inside. No one was, and Veatch began hosing down the resulting fire with a garden hose before emergency crews arrived. Veatch is a firefighter with the South Metro Fire Rescue Authority.
“It just exploded so fast. I don’t know how he got out,” neighbor Lydia Chavez said.
Emergency crews with North Metro Fire were able to put the fire out and save a dog in a garage, and they began to take Veatch, who had cuts on his face, to the hospital. Midway through the ride Veatch sat up, said he was fine and said he wanted to speak with authorities and give them a report. They then took him to the police station to discuss details of the crash.
Officials with the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the crash. An agent told CBS4 they are documenting wreckage and checking air traffic control and any maintenance or work that may have done on the plane. They are also looking into the pilot’s medical records.
A crane was brought in midday on Tuesday to remove the plane from the home.
It’s not clear if Veatch will face any charges. He was heading to Coors Field from an airport in Platteville at the time to fly with the banner. He was expected to return to the same airport.
A search of property records in the north Denver metro area shows Veatch owned the home about 10 years ago and also owned several other homes in Adams County.