A private jet carrying 21 people crashed and burst into flames Tuesday while attempting to take off from a Houston airport – but, miraculously, only two people were reported injured.
The twin-engine MD-87 rolled through a fence and ignited in a field at Houston Executive Airport in Brookshire, about 28 miles from the city, about 10 a.m., Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Elizabeth Cory told The Post.
“Preliminary information indicates that 21 people were aboard and that all of them evacuated safely,” she said in an email.
The plane was headed to Boston, according to aviation sources. The 18 passengers on board were headed to the city to see the Houston Astros play the Red Sox in Game 4 of MLB’s American League Championship Series, Waller County Sheriff Troy Guidry told Reuters.
Video broadcast by KPRC-TV from a chopper showed the gutted fuselage on fire, with the tail section and two engines all that remained intact after the crash.
All of the passengers and three crew members got were safely evacuated from the plane with two people treated in the hospital for injuries.
“Anytime you have plane that doesn’t make a landing on the runway like it’s supposed to, we’re always expecting the worst and hoping for the best and today, we absolutely, positively got the best outcome we could hope for,” emergency services official Tim Gibson told KPRC.
Among the passengers was a 10-year-old boy and a developer J. Alan Kent, CEO of Flair Builders, the home construction company and registered agent of the plane, KTRK-TV reported.
Kent, described as “frantic,” told a reporter with the station later in the day that he was with all of the survivors trying to make sense of the near-disaster. He confirmed the group was made up of friends on their way to see the Astros play.
Waller County Judge Trey Duhon said on Facebook that the plane was departing to the north when it had trouble gaining altitude, crossed a road and came to rest in the field.
Deep tire tracks were visible cut into the grass beyond the end of the runway stretching for yards, helicopter video showed. It is not clear how high the plane climbed, if at all, before it came to rest and became a twisted, blackened wreck.
Construction worker Chelsea Alfaro sat in a truck near the crash.
“I happened to hear a boom and I looked back and the truck kind of shook a little bit and I could see big orange flames up in smoke,” Alfaro told KHOU.com.
The workers ran over to do what they could to help, directing traffic and chipping in when emergency workers arrived, she said.
“I didn’t really see much of the plane go down but I did see the boom and felt the explosion, so then we just came out here and helping everybody,” she said of the “chaotic” scene.
The plane (N987AK), owned by 987 Investments LLC, had a manufacturing certificate was issued in 2015. The MD-87 had a 172-seat capacity.
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