An Indonesian air force plane slammed into a military housing complex and ignited a huge fireball today while trying to land in Jakarta, killing all seven people aboard as well as two toddlers and their nanny in a home. The pilot, co-pilot, and five trainees aboard the Fokker F-27 were on a routine training flight when it crashed into houses in a neighborhood about a mile from the runway where it was trying to land, Indonesian military spokesmen said.
Raging orange flames jumped several yards into the air and a huge column of black smoke billowed over the eight homes damaged in the crash in eastern Jakarta. Twelve people were injured, two critically. The aircraft, which was built in 1958 and has been used by Indonesia's air force for the past 35 years with 14,900 flight hours, was declared airworthy before it took off for its second training flight of the day under clear skies, said an air force rep. "It seemed that the pilot was trying to land on a nearby paddy field," he noted. "But it was not clear whether it was because of an emergency." (Read more Indonesia stories.)