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3 Dead in N.J. Plane Collision

August 9, 2000

BURLINGTON TOWNSHIP, N.J. (AP) _ Two small airplanes collided over southern New Jersey on Wednesday, killing at least three people, federal officials said.

Falling wreckage crashed into a house and set the building on fire.

The two planes were a Piper Navajo and a Piper Seminole, said Arlene Salac, a spokeswoman for the Federal Aviation Administration.

Authorities had confirmed at least three deaths, Salac said.

The couple who lived in the house that was struck escaped unharmed. There was no immediate word if anyone else on the ground was injured.

Fire extensively damaged the two-story, brick-front house, in a suburban development about 10 miles south of Trenton.

Homeowner Ed Triskoska said he was getting ready for work when the plane hit the garage area.

``Another few feet and it would have been in my ear,″ Triskoska told WTXF-TV in Philadelphia. He said he and his wife ran out the back of the house.

Gerald Consolo, 33, who lives in a neighboring development, said he heard what sounded like an airplane with engine trouble.

Consolo said he heard a loud noise and saw that a twin-engine plane had broken up, with its tail section separated from the fuselage. He said it was the fuselage and engine parts that struck Triskoska’s house.

Television coverage showed an airplane tail section in a nearby field and what appeared to be a piece of a wing on the roof of a neighboring home.

Update hourly