Maine Capitol Police employee narrowly escapes being hit by 7lb plane part that fell from the sky

A large metal object from a trans-Atlantic jet fell just outside Maine’s state house, nearly injuring an employee, officials said on Monday.

The cylindrical metal object weighing six to seven pounds crashed to the ground about seven feet away from where Capitol police screener Craig Donahue was standing on Friday afternoon, according to officials.

Mr Donahue was walking outside the entrance when the object crash-landed. While there were other witnesses in the area, no one was injured.

The federal aviation department was alerted on Friday and officials returned to the state house on Monday to investigate the object, Capitol police chief Matthew Clancy said.

“It definitely shocked him,” the chief said. “He was walking back to the building and got quite a wakeup call.”

The federal department believes the object to be the metal sleeve from the wing flap of a large passenger jet. All airlines were notified and all planes landed safely that day, Mr Clancy said.

He added that the area where the object crashed remains busy when the Maine legislature is in session, and is routinely used for rallies, protests and press conferences.

Paul Cote from Twin City Aero Supply, which provides aircraft parts, told the Central Maine newspaper that he’s never seen an aircraft part that looks like the fallen object.

“I’m having a hard time believing that it is even an aircraft part,” he said after reviewing the image.

“Most aircraft parts are made of aluminium and do not look that worn out.”