Continental Express Flight 3407, heading to Buffalo from Newark, New Jersey crashed into a home just five miles from Buffalo International Airport, killing 50 people. The Bombardier Dash 8 Q400 twin-engine turbo prop reported mechanical problems as they approached.
The crash occurred at 10:20 p.m. on Thursday night with light snow, fog and mist in the area. A Delta flight that landed near the time of the crash reported ‘rime icing’, a condition of ice quickly building up on the leading edges of the wings.
A resident of the Clarence Center neighborhood described the crash as a high-pitched sound followed by what felt like a mini earth quake. We’ve got the last transmission between the pilot and air traffic controllers at the bottom of this post.
The victims are reported to include 49 on board the plane and one person on the ground. Erie County Medical Examiners have established a command post at the scene. Four people were injured at the crash site, including a mother and daughter who were in the home.
The NTSB is expected on the scene at 6:00 a.m. Authorities indicate the scene is still too hot to investigate and hazardous material issues need to be dealt with. They anticipate that it will be noon before investigators can begin their work.
The airline released a statement: “At this time the full resources of Colgan Air’s accident response team has be mobilized. They are contacting family members and providing assistance to them.”
The Buffalo home was still fully engulfed in flames at 12:30 a.m. A dozen houses were evacuated and a limited state of emergency was declared, according to Erie County executive Chris Collins.
Photos, video below.