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Pilot, two civilians die in Indonesian military plane crash

The plane was a Brazilian-made Embraer Super Tucano.

By Ed Adamczyk
Pilot, two civilians die in Indonesian military plane crash
An Indonesian air force Embraer Super Tucano crashed into a home Wednesday, killing two people on the ground and the pilot. The status of a second person in the plane was unclear. Photo courtesy Embraer

MALANG , Indonesia, Feb. 10 (UPI) -- An Indonesian Air Force training plane crashed into a home in Malang, East Java, on Wednesday, killing the pilot and two residents of the home.

The pilot of the Brazilian-made Embraer Super Tucano plane, identified as Maj. Ifi Safatilah, ejected from the plane but he was found dead in a nearby rice field. The plane was involved in a routine test flight when it crashed. The fate of the on-board flight engineer, identified a Saiful, was unclear.

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"The aircraft was running a test flight at 25,000 feet and then descended to 15,000 feet. After the pilot requested clearance to descend to 8,000 feet, we lost contact with the aircraft. Ten minutes later, the aircraft reportedly crashed into a house," Col. Djoko Sanoputro, commander of nearby Abdul Rachman Saleh Air Force Base, said in an interview with BeritaSatu TV.

The civilians who died were Erna Wahyuningtyas, 47, and a man who rented a room in her home in Malang's Blimbing neighborhood, identified as Nurcholis, 27, Malang Deputy Mayor Sutiaji said.

An eyewitness described the plane as circling in the air before suddenly diving to the ground. The military blocked all roads leading to the site after the crash.

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The small plane, used in the air force of several nations, is designed for light attack, counterinsurgency and serial reconnaissance missions.

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