A plane with a total of five individuals smashed into homes on Monday in Riverside, California, killing around three people so far, injuring two others, according to authorities.
The passengers had been on their way back from San Jose after their cheerleading competition over the weekend at Disneyland during the time of the plane crash, 4:45 p.m..
The crash set two homes on fire, said the Riverside Fire Chief Michael Moore in a press conference. The crash’s causation still is not yet clear.
Victims and Damage
Two women in their 30s had to be transported from the scene of the accident to local hospitals in order to receive medical treatment. Authorities currently believe that no residents of either of the homes damaged had been injured, said Moore.
One of the women had been ejected from her seat in the plane, and survived with a few minor injuries. Another victim had been pulled from the crash’s rubble, and transported to the nearby hospital in “very critical condition” unconscious, stated Moore. She had to undergo surgery on Monday night.
Disney’s California Adventure Park located in Anaheim had hosted the Jr. Nationals United Spirit Association’s cheerleading contest last weekend.
“This is supposedly a happy time and then just to have a tragic incident like this …,” said Moore, “It’s really just a sad case for us.”
Events and Witnesses
The Cessna 310 crashed around half a mile northeast of Riverside Municipal Airport, and took off not long before the crash, said airport manager Kim Ellis to the Orange Country Register. Witnesses say they saw the aircraft turn, do a nosedive, then explode into a “big orange ball of fire.”
The plane then split when it slammed into the neighbourhood, completely destroying two separate homes, a car, an scattering debris for half a mile.
The whole block — around 20 houses— had to be evacuated in order for the National Transportation Safety Board’s investigation.
“We are continuing to look for live victims as we go,” stated Moore.