Three Killed After Plane Crashes Into Florida Mobile Home Park, FAA Says

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Three Killed After Plane Crashes Into Florida Mobile Home Park, FAA Says

Topline

Three people died after a single engine plane crashed into a mobile home park in Clearwater, Florida, Thursday night, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

In this image made from video, fire engine, firefighters and other officials are seen inside police … [+] tape on scene of a small plane crash in Clearwater, Florida, Feb. 1, 2024.(WFTS-TV via AP)

Associated Press

Key Facts

The FAA said in a statement the crash occurred around 7 p.m. after the pilot of the Beechcraft Bonanza V35 reported an engine failure.

The pilot was the only person on board and died in the crash, while a preliminary investigation found two people on the ground were also killed.

The National Traffic Safety Board will lead the investigation, the FAA said.

At a Thursday night press conference, Clearwater Fire Chief Scott Ehlers said fire personnel arrived on site around 7:15 p.m. and found four mobile homes engulfed in flames with an aircraft having landed in one of them—the victims all came from that one house, Ehlers said Thursday.

The airport tower received a transmission from the pilot “that he was having a ‘mayday, mayday, mayday,’” just before the crash, and then went off radar three miles north of the runway, landing in the Bayside Estates mobile home community, Ehlers said.

Crucial Quote

“I noticed as it was coming down, it was just a solid white ball, just coming down, it didn’t dim or nothing,” eyewitness Laketa Collins told local TV station WTSP, explaining that as the plane fell it looked “like a shooting star.”

Key Background

The crash comes amid heightened scrutiny of air travel in the U.S. and other high-profile aircraft incidents. The FAA’s investigation into plane manufacturer Boeing continues after a door blew open on an Alaska Airlines flight from Portland to Ontario, California earlier this month. In Virginia, a small plane made an emergency landing on a highway, managing to maneuver safely without striking any vehicles. There were no injuries reported in that incident.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

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