A Kenyan man unveiled his home-made plane in front of crowds and television crews – only for it to crash down seconds after take off.
Gabriel Nderitu, from Othaya, central Kenya, assembled the aircraft himself and was making a sixth attempt to get it off the ground. The 48-year-old’s invention set off and roared up a specially-made wooden ramp – only to nosedive seconds later just metres after take-off.
Crowds watched on and filmed the plane as it trundled across a make-shift airstrip before making its brief flight.
Fortunately nobody was injured because Mr Nderitu, who has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Physics from the University of Nairobi, was controlling the craft remotely.
Onlookers could be heard laughing as the plane dipped out of sight beyond the ramp, which was installed at Kiawara in Kieni West Sub-County.
But Mr Nderitu, who hired a team of five to help realise his dream after developing an interest in aeronautical engineering, is determined to build a successful model.
He is now planning to request the Ministry of Roads and Infrastructure to allow him to test his next aircraft project on one of the tarmacked airstrips that are not in use currently
Mr Nderitu said he has incurred a lot of loss since he started his innovation, adding that many of the parts he uses including the engine are all imported.
When the aircraft crash landed on Saturday, it broke and many of its parts were destroyed.
Mr Nderitu said it will take time before he pieces them back to form.
Mid-2014, during a similar test in Nyeri, when Nation team caught up with him, he said he had no training in aeronautical engineering.
He, however, uses the Internet to get the information he uses in his work.
“When I decided to build an aircraft, I bought books related to this line of interest.
“I used the Internet to do my research and for over five years now and the progress is good. Much of what I have done is private research and experimentation,” said Mr Nderitu.