EXTRA: Couple survives separate plane crashes on same day

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A couple have had a miracle escape after surviving separate plane crashes on the same day.

Stefano Pirilli, 30, escaped unhurt in his smash while his fiancé Antonietta Demasi, a 22-year-old student, was only slightly hurt when her aircraft came down.

The one in a million-coincidence happened after the couple decided to take separate light airplanes on a lunch date with friends near the northern Italian city of Turin on Sunday.


Stefano’s two-seater Tecnam P92 Echo Super came down at San Gillio after getting into difficulties, while his student partner’s plane crashed 25 miles away at Busano a short while later.

Firefighters raced to both scenes and the couple were both cut from the wreckage of their respective planes and taken to hospital, along with the pilots of each one.

The group had flown to enjoy a meal at a hilltop farmhouse, and it was Antonietta’s first time in a plane.

Doctors said Antonietta suffered pelvic injuries while the pilot of her plane Paolo Rotondo, 38, was treated for a head wound.


Energy consultant Stefano, who was flying in a two-seater plane, was unscathed while his friend and pilot Nicola Fiscarelli, 42, was said to only have suffered slight injuries.

Stefano said: ‘This was Antonietta’s first flying experience and I’m so sorry for what happened. The day had started so beautifully, and it ended up with us both crashing in separate planes.

‘We are fortunate that we weren’t killed, and our thoughts are with the pilots who were injured. I just want my girlfriend and the pilot to get better, nothing else matters.

‘Sunday was a perfect day for flying blue skies, sunshine and not a cloud, it was the perfect way to have some fun in in the air.’

Stefano – who describes himself as a ‘petrol head’ – described how both planes had taken off from an airfield near Turin and then headed for Asti where the group had lunch at a hilltop farmhouse.

After finishing their meal the group took off again and headed out towards Savona on the west coast to catch a glimpse of the sea in the winter sunshine.

But it was as both planes returned to an airstrip near Turin that they ran into trouble as mist began to descend and darkness fell.

Stefano said: ‘We fell foul of the weather and the time – the mist started to come up as the temperature dropped and then all of a sudden it was night.

‘We decided to try and land at Busano and I called Antonietta and told her and the pilot of her plane said he would land at the airfield near San Gillio.

‘As we headed to the airstrip we were just enveloped in mist and darkness, and we knew there were electricity cables around but before we knew it we had crashed onto the ground and into a meadow.

‘We had missed the airstrip by about 100 metres, I managed to get out of the wreckage and pulled the other pilot out.

‘I managed to call the emergency services and then I tried to call Antonietta but there was no answer and then the firefighters turned up and said how crazy it was as this was their second plane crash.

‘I asked them if it was a couple, a man and a woman, in the other plane and they said yes and that’s when my blood ran cold and I knew it was Antonietta.

‘They told me she had been taken to hospital but was ok while the pilot had been more seriously hurt.

‘I rushed straight to the hospital and have been there ever since. I just hope Antonietta and Paolo are out of hospital soon.’

Civil aviation chiefs have opened an investigation into both crashes.

Daily Mail