Frozen Migrant Plunges into London Garden After Falling from African Plane
Kenyan stowaway lands 3 feet from horrified sunbather after freezing to death in jet
The frozen corpse of an African migrant has left a large crater in the ground of a London garden after plunging from a Kenya Airways airplane as it approached Heathrow Airport.
The body of the Kenyan stowaway smashed a hole in the concrete slabs of the £2.3 million ($2.9M) Clapham, South London property after falling 3,500 feet from the jet, landing just three feet away from a horrified sunbather.
It is believed that the migrant was hiding in an area above the plane's landing gear on the Nairobi to London flight, but froze to death during the journey and fell out as the aircraft prepared to land while passing over the exclusive suburb in the British capital.
The body landed partly on concrete paving slabs and partly on a lawn - leaving a large crater in the garden of the upmarket residence, which is 13 miles east of Heathrow.
One tenant at the rented mid-terrace property was relaxing in the garden, enjoying the unusually hot weather on Sunday afternoon, when the body landed right next to him after plunging from the skies.
A male neighbor said: "He was very shaken. He had been sunbathing and he landed one meter away from him."
Locals in leafy Offerton Road told of the horrific scene that greeted them after they heard a "whomp" sound shortly after 3.30pm on Sunday.
One female neighbor told the Daily Mail: "There was an almighty bang.
"At first, I thought it was some scaffolding falling down and thought nothing more about it.
"My husband decided to see what was going on and went upstairs to take a look.
"He was obviously quite shocked and went out into the street where my neighbor was standing on the phone to the police.
"He was really shaken up. He'd been in the garden when it happened and the body must have landed so close to where he was.
"My husband came back in and I asked him what was going on and he said 'haven't you seen the man? The man who fell from the sky?'
"I wondered what he was talking about and went up to see for myself and there in the middle of the lawn was a body of a man."
The male neighbor, who asked not to be named, added: "I heard a 'whomp' - I went upstairs to look out of a window.
"At first, I thought it was a tramp asleep in the garden.
"He had all of his clothes on and everything.
"I had a closer look and saw there was blood all over the walls of the garden.
"His head was not in a good way.
"I realized immediately that he had fallen, so I went outside and it was just then the neighbor came out and he was very shaken."
He said a plane-spotter who had been tracking the flight saw the body fall and rushed to the scene.
Police arrived within minutes and identified flight KQ100 as the plane the man fell from.
Flight data shows the Boeing 787 passed over Offerton Road at 3.36pm on Sunday at 3,575ft and traveling at nearly 200mph.
It left Jomo Kenyatta International Airport at 9.19am local time and arrived at 3.42pm.
Airline officials said a bag, water and a stash of food were found in the plane's landing gear after a subsequent search.
The corpse, which was wearing a blue t-shirt and jeans, remained at the scene for five hours before being taken away by the coroner's office.
The house in Offerton Road was bought for £2.3million last November by a tech entrepreneur aged in his early 30s.
His father is believed to have made millions in business in the Midlands.
It is situated three hundred yards from Clapham Common, which was packed with sunseekers on Sunday afternoon, leading residents to say the tragedy could have been much worse if the body had fallen moments earlier.
However, the sunbathing tenant, who is said to be in his 20s and renting the property with friends, was sleeping in the garden as the body crashed to earth.
The man's friend, who was inside the house at the time, said it was a miracle the impact did not kill anyone on the ground.
He told the Sun: "He didn't even realize what it was, to begin with.
"He was asleep and then there was a huge impact.
"The body literally landed one meter away from him and was obliterated.
"My friend was very shaken.
"There were a few of us in the house at the time and it was lucky only one of us was in the garden.
"Nobody would have survived being hit. The impact was horrific."
The tenant's brother said there was "a lot of blood" at the scene.
He added: "It was a narrow miss. The garden isn't very big.
"There was more than a lot of blood.
"It wasn't pretty and caused a significant amount of damage."
Another neighbor told how the man relaxing in the garden as the body landed was shaken up by the horrific incident.
He said: "I saw the young lad who'd been in the garden when it happened.
"He was sitting on his front steps and was really shaken up.
"He was almost in a trance.
"I asked him if he was OK and if he needed anything.
"He said in a soft quiet voice 'no thanks' and I think that was all he could say.
"The police were with him.
"You could see this had really affected him - but then it would anyone."
The female neighbor who spoke to the Daily Mail said the body was lying face-up and was largely intact.
"Whether that was because he was frozen, I don't know," she said.
"He looked to be lying facing up but his neck was quite badly twisted.
"Next to him was a dent in the grass which must have been the point of impact.
"The day before there was a children's party so it could have been even worse.
"My heart goes out to my neighbor and also to the poor victim.
"It's so out of the ordinary and certainly not what you'd expect in a quiet suburban London street."
The body was removed at about 8.30pm and a clean-up team returned yesterday morning to continue the job, a further neighbor said.
He added: "I spoke to Heathrow Airport this morning to ask if they were aware of this.
"If it had been two seconds later, he would have landed on the common where there were hundreds of people - my kids were in the garden 15 minutes before [he fell].
"I spoke to Heathrow. They said 'this happens once every five years.'"
Describing the victim, he said: "One of the reasons his body was so intact was because his body was an ice block."
He added: "The investigation is with Nairobi Airport, if someone can climb up into the wheel arch then someone can put up a bomb up there and let it off over London."
The 4,250-mile trip from Nairobi to Heathrow takes around eight hours and 50 minutes, according to the airline.
Kenya Airways said the Kenya High Commission in London has already been contacted.
Their statement read: "The incident has been treated as a sudden death and is now a police matter.
"The police have already been in contact with the Kenya High Commission to help identify and name the person.
"It is unfortunate that a person has lost his life by stowing aboard one of our aircraft and we express our condolences.
"Kenya Airways is working closely with the relevant authorities in Nairobi and London as they fully investigate this case."
The aircraft was undamaged and cleared to take-off again yesterday after being inspected at Heathrow.
The Met Police said a post-mortem will be carried out in due course, and the age of the individual has yet to be determined.
The death is not being treated as suspicious.
Inquiries are being conducted with the Met's southern central command unit and its aviation policing command.
The Met said it would be liaising with the airline and international authorities.