Plane crashes in neighborhood |

Plane crashes in neighborhood

Ivy VogelGlenwood Springs correspondent

When Paula, Lauren and Dave Matheson returned from a soccer game Saturday morning, they found a chunk of their roof missing and a Cessna 170A in their driveway. The plane was on its belly wedged between the Mathesons’ townhouse and a neighbor’s residence in a neighborhood on Mt. Sopris Drive.”We were so lucky we were delayed at the soccer game or we might have been pulling into the driveway when it crashed,” Paula said.

Though authorities are not exactly sure what happened, they suspect that pilot Norm Cohen of Snowmass, who apparently escaped serious injury, was preparing to land at the Glenwood Springs Airport when, for some reason, he decided not to land, said Terry Wilson, Glenwood Springs police chief. Cohen flew past the airport, turned around and was headed back to the airport when his landing gear hit the Mathesons’ roof.After striking the townhouse, the plane’s nose hit the second-story landing of an adjacent townhouse and landed on its belly and left wing.Wilson believes Cohen crashed because his plane lost power.

Cohen was conscious when he was removed from the plane and was taken to Valley View Hospital, Wilson said. No further information on Cohen’s condition was available; Valley View cited HIPPA guidelines.The only visible injuries on Cohen were a few facial scratches, Wilson said, and no one else was injured.Plane crashes can happen for a variety of reasons, including mechanical problems, bad weather and pilot error, said Dick Weinberg, manager for Glenwood Springs Airport.Weinberg has flown with Cohen on several occasions and said Cohen is an experienced pilot.

“There’s been a few accidents here and there but that’s normal for most airports,” Weinberg said.Using a cherry picker, firefighters cut off the wings and placed the 1,500-pound plane on a flatbed trailer.”I think for bringing an airplane out of the sky into a housing development we got really lucky,” Wilson said.

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