|Date||October 20, 1987|
|Type||In-flight engine failure|
|Fatalities||9 (All in the Ramada Inn)|
|Aircraft type||A-7D Corsair II|
|Operator||United States Air Force|
The Ramada Inn Air Crash and Fire was an aircraft accident that occurred at the Airport Ramada Inn in Indianapolis, Indiana when a United States Air Force pilot missed the runway and the plane crashed into a nearby Ramada Inn.
On the morning of October 20, 1987, a United States Air Force A-7D Corsair II piloted by Major Bruce L. Teagarden was en route to Nevada after departing Pittsburgh International Airport earlier in the day. At 9:11 a.m., Teagarden notified controllers at Indianapolis International Airport that his aircraft had sustained some sort of engine failure approximately 15 miles (24 km) southwest of the city and he was returning to Indianapolis to attempt an emergency landing. Controllers at Indianapolis routed Teagarden to Runway 5L, but due to the low cloud ceiling and poor visibility conditions over Indianapolis, Teagarden was at 3,100 feet (940 m) MSL when he came to the threshold and was forced to make an alternate plan to land on Runway 32 instead.
Teagarden made a right turn to head east away from the airport, but continued to drop from 3,100 feet (940 m) to 2,000 feet (610 m) just to the east of Interstate 465 at the eastern edge of the airport where controllers lost him from the radar. As his altitude dropped, Teagarden was forced to eject from the aircraft 500 feet (150 m) above ground, and the plane made a slight left turn towards the Park Fletcher business development. It struck the Bank One branch in the 5600 block of Bradbury Avenue, bounced off the roof, flew across the street and hit an embankment, went 25 feet (7.6 m) airborne, and then crashed into the front of the Ramada Inn.
As the plane crashed into the Ramada Inn, the cockpit and engine went into the lobby, killing nine people. The wings went into the upper floors of the top of the carport and upper floors of the hotel. The jet fuel on board ignited on impact, causing a fireball that covered the entire front of the hotel up to the fourth floor . Indianapolis Airport crash trucks arrived on the scene a minute after impact and started to use foam to extinguish the fire, which was under control within the first four minutes. Other elements of the Airport fire department were assigned to search and rescue of the building, while assistance was requested from the Indianapolis Fire Department and the Decatur Township Fire Department.
Meanwhile, the hotel was evacuated completely by Ramada Inn staff and guests.