Refrigerator-Size Plane Door Crashes Into Washington Neighborhood

A refrigerator-sized sheet of metal fell into onto a heavily trafficked street.

ByABC News
September 9, 2012, 9:41 AM

Sept. 9, 2012 — -- Residents in a Seattle suburb are questioning how and why a sheet of metal the size of a refrigerator fell from the sky and onto a heavily trafficked street.

Witnesses say the object fell from the sky just before 7 a.m. Friday morning, crashing down onto a residential street in Kent, Washington's East Hill. The piece of metal skipped about 30 feet before coming to rest on the street, KOMO reported.

The Federal Aviation Administration was soon on the scene to investigate the incident. In a statement, the agency told ABC News the object was "a landing gear door from a Boeing 767."

Residents in Kent are still perplexed over exactly where the landing door came from. Just moments before the door crashed into the neighborhood, people described what looked like a cargo jet flying unusually low.

"It sounded like maybe a little distressed, or vibrating," Kent resident Diane Oien said.

Witnesses told KOMO that many people walk through the area each day, including children heading to school. Luckily, no one was injured in the incident.

Col. Stephen Ganyard, retired U.S. Marine Commander and ABC News Consultant explained that air force on the plane may have led to the door being stripped from the plane.

"What could have happened in this instance is, as the aircraft was coming in to land in Seattle, the force of the air on the landing gear door could have torn off an already weakened gear door that may have then lead to this piece of metal going into the residential area," he said.

This is not the first instance of plane parts being stripped from aircrafts and falling from the sky.

In May, pieces the size of cell phones from an Air Canada Boeing 777 scattered onto cars near Toronto.

Just days prior, a door from a small plane landed in the middle of a fairway on a Miami golf course.

In 2009, a dozen houses and numerous cars in Manaus, Brazil were reported damaged when parts -- one weighing as much as 550 pounds -- fell from a cargo freighter.

"This something that happens quiet frequently, especially as airplanes get older and things tend to break," Ganyard said.