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Plane crash investigation underway in Divide, Colorado

TELLER COUNTY, Colo. (KRDO) – It's rare to be able to walk away from being in a plane crash, but two people did exactly that Monday afternoon in a neighborhood just west of Divide.

The Teller County Sheriff’s Office and other emergency authorities responded to the scene near Valley View Drive, where a single-engine plane crashed upside-down in an open field between two houses.


It was around 1 p.m. that the craft went down, authorities said, in the Grandview Estates in Divide, near the intersection of U.S. 24 and Highway 67.

Bob Barton, a local rancher, said that he and his family were attending the annual Territory Days festival in Colorado Springs when neighbors alerted them to the situation.


"They had seen (the plane) coming up the valley when they were out working in their yard," he recalled. "They said that they heard it go down, and then three large booms. So that probably was as it was impacting."

The plane remained largely intact after the emergency landing, and there was no fire or smoke visible.


"He got it down, and the front gear just dug in and then flipped it over," Barton explained. "I think the pilot did a good job of finding an open space. I think that he or she may have known that they were having engine problems, and were looking for an open field to land in."

Another neighbor, Richard Emlinger, said that he noticed the plane just before it crashed.


"I thought it was flying awfully low," he said. "I was working in my yard at the time. My wife called me in to dinner, and right after that the emergency responders arrived. I saw one of the people in the plane walking to an ambulance."

The TCSO stated that the pilot and passenger from the crash were taken to Memorial Hospital in Colorado Springs; their injuries are not believed to be serious.

Federal authorities are expected to arrive later this week to investigate the crash.

Neighbors said that aircraft are common over their neighborhood because their flight paths are a common route between airports in the Colorado Springs area and in Buena Vista, 53 miles west of Divide.


KRDO has learned that the plane is registered to Chris Raphael, of Colorado Springs; a flight tracking system lists takeoff locations as the Meadow Lake Airport in El Paso County, and the Lake George area 11 miles west of Divide.

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Jaleesia Fobbs

Jaleesia is a Digital Content and Weekend Broadcast Producer for GMC.


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