Tags: melbourne | plane | crash

Melbourne Plane Crash Kills 4 American Golfers, Pilot

Image: Melbourne Plane Crash Kills 4 American Golfers, Pilot

View from tarmac at Melbourne Airport where plane crashed. (Michael Dodge/Getty Images)
 

Tuesday, 21 Feb 2017 06:00 AM

Four American tourists on a golfing vacation were killed along with their Australian pilot when a light plane crashed in flames into a shopping mall on Tuesday shortly after takeoff in the Australian city of Melbourne.

The five were on a twin-engine Beechcraft Super King Air that crashed about 45 minutes before the Direct Factory Outlet mall in suburban Essendon was to open, The Associated Press reported Police Minister Lisa Neville as saying.

The U.S. Embassy in Canberra confirmed that four victims were U.S. citizens. Texans Greg Reynolds De Haven and Russell Munsch have been identified by their families on social media as two of the victims.

De Haven's sister Denelle Wicht posted on Facebook that her 70-year-old brother had been killed "on a once in a lifetime trip to Australia" with friends.

The pilot was Max Quartermain, owner of the charter company Corporate and Leisure Travel.

The plane had taken off from Melbourne's second-biggest airport at Essendon for a golfing trip to King Island, 160 miles to the south, officials said.

The mall adjoins the airport.

Police Assistant Commissioner Stephen Leane said no one outside the plane was injured.

"Looking at the fireball, it is incredibly lucky that no one was at the back of those stores or in the car park of the stores, that no one was even hurt," Leane said.

The pilot reported a "catastrophic engine failure" moments before the plane crashed into a storage area at the rear of the mall, police said.

Police and paramedics rushed to the crash site, where firefighters doused the flames.

A witness who gave his name as Jason told Australian Broadcasting Corp. he was passing the mall in a taxi when the plane crashed.

"I saw this plane coming in really low and fast. I couldn't see the impact but when it hit the building there was a massive fireball," he said.

"I could feel the heat through the window of the taxi, and then a wheel — it looked like a plane wheel — bounced on the road and hit the front of the taxi as we were driving along," he said.

© Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 
1Like our page
2Share
TheWire
Four American tourists on a golfing vacation were killed along with their Australian pilot when a light plane crashed in flames into a shopping mall on Tuesday shortly after takeoff in the Australian city of Melbourne.
melbourne, plane, crash
352
2017-00-21
Tuesday, 21 Feb 2017 06:00 AM
Newsmax Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved