A plane crashed into a house in a suburban New Jersey neighborhood Tuesday, sparking fires in at least two homes and prompting a federal investigation.
The Federal Aviation Association said a Cessna 414 crashed into a home on Berkley Avenue in Colonia at 11 a.m. Tuesday, causing it to become engulfed in flames. Fortunately, no civilians were hurt, and only the pilot was on board during the time of the crash. It wasn’t immediately clear what injuries the pilot sustained, if any. The FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board said they are investigating the cause of the crash.
There were no residents in the home when the plan came crashing down from the sky, according to NBC New York, but nearby homes were damaged, with flames lapping those buildings as well.
Images taken at the site showed massive flames and plumes of smoke engulfing the idyllic home. The town’s mayor, John McCormac, told local media that the plane had settled in the basement of the house.
“Right now we don’t believe any civilians on the ground were impacted by the crash, although the pilot… nobody knows for sure yet. Nobody has gotten close to the plane,” McCormac told media shortly after the crash.
— The FAA (@FAANews) October 29, 2019
The plane was reportedly headed out of Virginia en route to a small airport in Linden, New Jersey.
Visibility was said to have dropped from 10 miles to two miles shortly before the crash. A neighbor told NBC New York that he heard a low plane before the crash.
“It sounded really low, it started to sputter a little bit,” the witness told the station. “All of a sudden there was this huge explosion, or just this big bang, louder than any car crash I’ve ever heard.”
Another witness told ABC News that the explosion “lit up the sky.”
“Everything was just a massive blaze. I went running down. I don’t know what I thought I was going to do. Anybody who was home would not have had a chance,” he said.
A neighbor shared on Facebook that he felt “incredibly lucky” to escape the catastrophe.
“We felt the thump and panicked thinking that either a truck crashed into our house or we just experienced an earthquake… Praying for the pilot and the families who were affected by this,” he wrote.
A tree-lined residential town, Colonia is located about 20 mile outside of New York City.