Two seriously injured people trapped inside a small plane that crashed into high-voltage power lines near Washington DC, causing mass outages, have been rescued, authorities have said.
“Both patients have been transported to local area trauma centers with serious injuries,” the Montgomery county fire chief, Scott Goldstein, said in a press briefing on Monday, adding that the two people had suffered hypothermia and orthopaedic and trauma-related injuries.
The aircraft crashed at about 5.30pm (10.30pm GMT) on Sunday in misty and wet conditions in Montgomery Village, Maryland, according to the Montgomery county fire and rescue service. It became caught up in live power lines about 100ft (30 metres) from the ground.
Goldstein said crews had been able to electrically ground the plane at about 11.30pm and it had been secured about 45 minutes later, with both patients lowered by 12.36am.
Most power in the county had been restored, according to Goldstein. Two hospitals were back at full capacity, he added.
The Washington-area utility company Pepco said it had restored electric service for all customers who had been affected by the incident. The company was continuing to stabilise energy infrastructure at the scene and assessing damage before beginning repairs, it added.
Crews were still working to remove the plane from power lines, the Montgomery county MD office of emergency management and homeland security said.
Goldstein had said earlier that rescue officials were in contact with the occupants by calling their cell phones.
According to the FAA, the Mooney M20J aircraft was flying from Westchester, New York, and had been due to land at Montgomery airpark, close to the crash site.