Doomed Plane Had Engine Problems Before Takeoff

Report: Pilot worked on plane before it slammed into Ft. Lauderdale house

The small plane that crashed into a Ft. Lauderdale home last week killing its pilot had engine problems before takeoff, according to a new report.

The report, released by the National Transportation Safety Borad today, said 80-year-old pilot Cecil Murray had spent about 20 minutes running his engines at full power before takeoff as the plane sat on the ground at Ft. Lauderdale Executive Airport.

Witnesses reportedly saw Murray shut the engines off, then add oil to one. He then fired them up again and ran them for another five minutes. 

Other witnesses said the plane's right wing was on fire as it dropped from the sky and crashed into the empty Oakland Park home.

A teen boy had left the house just minutes before the plane hit and practically severed the home in two.

The plane, a twin engine Cessna 421C, "disintegrated" when it slammed into the house, according to fire officials.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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