(TheBlaze/AP) — Three people were killed when a small plane crashed into a house Friday afternoon while trying to land at a central Florida airport, the Florida Highway Patrol said. Miraculously, though, the homeowner made it out relatively unscathed.
The 1957 Beechcraft H35 Bonanza was heading from Fort Pierce to Knoxville, Tenn., when it began experiencing mechanical problems, FHP Lt. Justin Asbury said. The pilot told controllers that the engine was shaky and there was smoke coming from the plane, and that the plane was entering bad weather.
The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office said the plane hit a Palm Coast home just east of the Flagler County Airport around 2:20 p.m., several minutes after the pilot’s call.
Robert Ferrigno, who lives down the street, said he heard the crash from his home.
“Planes go over here all the time, but this afternoon, I heard, `putt, putt, putt,’ and then I heard, `boom,’” Ferrigno said. “I looked outside, and there were flames shooting up over the trees.”
Ferrigno and another neighbor, Armando Gonzalez, ran down the street to the crash site.
The home’s owner – identified by FHP as Susan Crockett – was already outside when they arrived, screaming that a plane had crashed into her house.
Ferrigno added that the crash had thrown insulation everywhere, saying, “It looked like it was snowing.”
Crockett was taken to a nearby hospital as a precaution, Asbury said, but is praising God that she wasn’t seriously harmed.
“God is good. He really is,” Crockett told reporters, according to CNN. “I got out without a scratch on me. A little bruise from taking a tumble through the window, but other than that, I’m fine. I’m blessed. Truly, God was with me.”
CNN has more:
Crockett said she was getting ready to leave her house when something told her to stop. A few more feet, she said, and she would have been hit.
Her college-age daughter, Jessica, who was home for the holidays, would have been lounging on a bed that’s now “charred and mangled” if she hadn’t decided to head back to school a few days early, Crockett said.
Crockett’s grandson often comes over to her house, where “he stands in front of the television that’s now a big glob of metal,” but his dad decided to take him to day care Friday, she said.
Members of Crockett’s church bought her clothes and shoes to wear, since she escaped the house with next to nothing. She did manage to rescue the folded flag she received after her sister, who was in the Army, died about three years ago. It’s blackened, but intact, she said.
“I’m just praising God that I’m alive,” Crockett said Saturday. [Emphasis added]
Authorities didn’t immediately identify the people on the plane.
WVLT has more, including an interview with Crockett’s daughter, Jessica: