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Wedding guests in Serbia accidentally shoot down small plane, media report AP via Sun Media ^ | October 12, 2003
BELGRADE, Serbia-Montenegro (AP) - In an apparent first, wedding guests shooting off celebratory rounds in central Serbia brought down a small aircraft, local media reported Sunday.
The FoNet news agency reported that the plane's pilot and a passenger were seriously injured Friday after their single-engine Utva-75 plane crashed into a high-voltage power line in the village of Ratina, some 160 kilometres west of Belgrade.
"Shortly before the crash I saw the plane flying at a very low altitude over a wedding party when guests started firing their handguns and other weapons," witness Zoran Vukadinovic told FoNet. The left wing of the aircraft subsequently caught fire, and the plane crashed, he said.
Shootings and fatalities are frequent at Serbian weddings because of the centuries-long tradition of blasting away with firearms in celebration. It was the first known reported case, however, of an aircraft being brought down by trigger-happy partygoers.
Attempts to trace Vukadinovic were unsuccessful, with FoNet refusing to divulge his phone number. Police confirmed the plane crash but refused to discuss its cause.
The pilot apparently was unlicensed, said FoNet, citing authorities, and the flight was unauthorized.
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