A small plane crash occurred in Arizona earlier today.
A Beechcraft BE35, single-engine plane was involved in a crash in Surprise, Arizona. The crash occurred at approximately 5 p.m. MST.
Surprise Fire-Medical department posted an update about the crash site roughly three hours after it occurred.
"Surprise Police are currently on-scene investigating a plane crash in the area of 14000 West Fire Mesa Trail in Surprise," the update explained.
The department's post went on to explain that "a small blue and white single-engine plane crash landed into a greenbelt area inside Sun Village, an active adult community in Surprise."
According to the Facebook post, there were no pedestrian casualties and no structures were damaged by the plane crash. Arizona Republic reported that it was possible that the pilot consciously attempted to avoid buildings and other structures, but it's too early in the investigation to know for sure.
First responders on scene small plane crash in residential area near Bell/Litchfield in Surprise. Waiting for info. pic.twitter.com/VBGkdaiJHcSergeant Norman Owens, a Surprise Police Department Spokesman, told the Arizona Republic that a witness reported seeing a plane flying west. The sergeant explained that the witness also saw the plane "hit the tops of some trees outside the Sun Village community."
— Raquel Cervantes (@RaquelABC15) May 8, 2016
The community center, where the plane crash occurred, houses adults over the age of 55 and is known for having a very active community. It is located in the Pueblo Village neighborhood behind a Kohl's department store and very close to a nearby golf course.
The Surprise Fire-Medical Department explained that the small plane held only two people, the pilot and a single passenger. Both occupants of the plane were severely injured in the crash and had to be transported to a hospital for care.
"The Surprise Fire and Medical Department have responded to the scene and have transported the pilot and the sole passenger to a local area hospital for further evaluation and treatment."The identities of both people involved in the plane crash have not yet been released to the media, but it has been noted by KTAR that one of the victims was in serious condition and was transported by ground, while the other was in critical condition and had to be airlifted. NBC News reported that both plane occupants were suffering from life-threatening injuries.
Trevor Williams and JoAnne Baum told the Arizona Republic that they were in a nearby store when they heard chaos outside. When they went to see what was happening, they stumbled upon the site of the plane crash. Baum took a picture and posted it to Twitter where the plane can be seen broken up into small pieces on a greenbelt surrounded by trees, with a structure in the background.
@12News @FOX10Phoenix @abc15 @azcentral pic.twitter.com/hzTHsmkL1UHe explained to the Arizona publication that it was "amazing" to see that the plane crash had not affected any of the surrounding structures at all, since the crash site is surrounded by homes and businesses.
— JoAnne Baum (@ddaabaum) May 8, 2016
"I, along with my girlfriend JoAnne, we were obviously thankful," he said, since they were both present in one of the nearby businesses.
As of right now, the Arizona Republic has reported that Ian Gregor, an FAA spokesman, has indicated that the reason for the plane crash is still unknown. The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board intend to investigate the plane crash for further information in order to make sure there was no foul play involved.
The Surprise Fire-Medical Department is also still investigating the scene of the plane crash.
"For any further information regarding the condition of occupants, please contact the Surprise Fire and Medical Department," the department wrote in the plane crash statement posted on their Facebook page.
The department also noted that the plane crash shouldn't affect traffic patterns or main roads.
[Photo by Twitter]