(BCN) -- A small Piper Cherokee plane that departed from Concord Buchanan Field at 4:50 p.m. has crashed on Interstate Highway 680 in Pleasant Hill, according to Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Donn Walker.
Officials with the Contra Costa County Fire Department are on the scene, in the center divider of the roadway just north of Willow Pass Road, about a mile from its departure point, a department dispatcher reports.
The plane erupted in a small fire on landing, but that has since been extinguished, the dispatcher said.
Three injuries were reported in connection with the crash, though the dispatcher said he did not know the extent of the injuries.
The dispatcher also said that the pilot is believed to be alive. Further information has not yet been released.
This is a little off. I was actually there when it happened. I was doing touch and goes at KCCR when this piper Cherokee took off for Colorado. As he was wheels up he declared an emergency and was going to climb higher so he could glide and do a 180 and land again on the same runway.
You have the runway and then you have the freeway at the end of the runway. He made a sharp right turn trying to climb and then made a slow left turn descending towards the freeway where he touched down bursting into flames as he touched down and slammed into the center divide.
On touch down the front prop cut through the side of a mini van cutting the leg of an 11 year old girl off. I headed over the accident and reported that they needed medical attention and would need a heli to transport the injured.
From there I landed and as taxiing could hear that they were only going to take the girl by air and the other five by car. The pilot and his son both escaped with no injures.
My instructor told me that though he hit a car he did what was right. If you are used to this airport the runway in which he departed has a very large mall to the right and a large circuit city and home depot to the left. If he was going to set down this was the best place to.
The girl is still in the OR and will keep her leg. The 5 other pax in the car were released with only bruses and the 2 pax in the piper later left for KOAK to catch a flight home.
WHAT A DAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!