STORY COURTESY KLFY. CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION.
UPDATE 2:40 p.m.: The plane, a twin-engine turbo prop Piper owned by Cheyenne Partners, LLC, (N42CV) was headed to DeKalb-Peachtree Airport in Atlanta, Ga., according to its flight plans. Flight data from flightaware.com showed that the plane only achieved an altitude of around 375 feet before crashing. Eyewitnesses explained that the plane took out power lines and struck a nearby occupied vehicle – the driver of which was among the bystanders take to the hospital.
The passengers of the plane have been confirmed as follows:
- Ian E. Biggs, white male, the plane’s pilot, age 51
- Robert Vaughn Crisp II, white male, age 59
- Carley Ann McCord, white female, age 30
- Gretchen D. Vincent, white female, age 51
- Michael Walker Vincent, white male, age 15
One injured plane passenger remains hospitalized and in critical condition:
- Stephen Wade Berzas, white male, age 37
Heartbreaking news out of Lafayette today. Please join @FirstLadyOfLA and I in praying for the families and friends of everyone affected by this terrible tragedy. #lagov #lalege https://t.co/qq8mul8yQ2
— John Bel Edwards (@LouisianaGov) December 28, 2019
Statement from the New Orleans Saints and New Orleans Pelicans pic.twitter.com/1WhBvJmjI5
— New Orleans Pelicans (@PelicansNBA) December 28, 2019
So sad to hear the news about Carley McCord she was always very excited and happy. The worst part is I saw her reporting yesterday as I was leaving home in the parking lot. Really sad, life is so short 💔 really wish I could do something 🙏🏾.
— Michael Thomas (@Cantguardmike) December 28, 2019
UPDATE, 11:06 a.m.: Lafayette Fire Chief Robert Benoit confirms the craft was an eight-passenger plane. There is one survivor from the crash in addition to the five fatalities. Three people on the ground not affiliated with the plane have been transported to the hospital. Local first responders are awaiting federal investigators, who will release further information.
BREAKING: 5 people confirmed dead after small plane crash in Lafayette, Louisiana. New conference starting shortly. pic.twitter.com/bFx2JlIfyv
— David Begnaud (@DavidBegnaud) December 28, 2019
UPDATE, 10:52 a.m.: Lafayette Fire Chief Robert Benoit confirms five fatalities at the scene. Acadian Ambulance confirms two people transported to local hospitals, one from the plane, one from outside the plane — possibly the motorist that was struck by plane debris.
ORIGINAL POST: LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) — The Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s Office confirms that a plane has crashed near the post office on Feu Follet Road near Verot School Road at around 9:20 this morning.
There appear to be unconfirmed fatalities and injuries, possibly as many as five people. The craft appears to be a small private plane, possibly a Piper fixed-wing, though that is currently unconfirmed, as well.
The Walmart on Pinhook Road has been evacuated as a precaution.
Acadian Ambulance responded to the crash of a small civilian airplane in Lafayette (La) this morning and transported two patients to a local hospital. pic.twitter.com/f0SKqNJI7V
— Acadian Companies (@AcadianNews) December 28, 2019
Eyewitnesses tell KLFY the scene say they heard sounds from above “like a semi-truck” as the lights went out at businesses and residences near the crash scene. Several residents tell KLFY they are without power at this hour.
Kevin Jackson, a local resident, said he saw the crash.
“I was right outside before the crash. I noticed (the plane) was low and smoking like hell,” said Jackson. “It shook my trailer. I knew something was bad. I went in my house, and all you heard was this massive explosion.”
Jackson and other eyewitnesses said the plane also hit a car on its way down.
“Someone was screaming from that car,” said one eyewitness. “There were little explosions for five minutes or so after that. There was a big old ball of flame.”