Small plane crashes at S. Fla. parking lot; 1 dies

Associated Press
Raw: Fiery Plane Crash in Fla. Parking Lot
Video from WSVN-TV shows the smoke-filled scene of apparent plane crash in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Local reports say a plane went down near the Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport. (March 15)

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — A small plane crashed into a parking lot near a South Florida airport Friday, killing at least one person and burning about a dozen cars. There was no word of casualties on the ground.

Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jack Seiler told WTVJ-TV that at least one person died in the crash of the Piper Navajo shortly after it took off from that city's executive airport. The plane, a two-engine turboprop, can carry a crew of two and four to six passengers.

A Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport spokesman says the plane began experiencing problems shortly after takeoff and was trying to return when it hit a warehouse at 53rd Street and North Powerline Road, about a half-mile east of the airport. It then crashed into the parking lot.

Television images showed about eight cars in a corner that were burned out shells, a smoldering heap covered in foam spread by firefighters on the scene.

A storage facility and an indoor go-kart track are among the businesses listed nearby.

The airport serves smaller planes rather than the larger commercial flights at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport.

The crash happened at the start of rush hour alongside Interstate 95, the major north-south route along Florida's Atlantic coast.