Rochester plane crash kills three [UPDATED]
A small, single-engine airplane crashed a mile north of the Rochester airport last night, killing three people aboard and narrowly missing at least one home on the ground.
The plane came down in the woods 100 yards from the home of Doug an Lori Eaton, the Post Bulletin reports. He called 911 two minutes past midnight after the plane hit the ground and erupted into a fireball; she ran to the crash site and called out in vain for survivors as flames and smoke poured from the aircraft.
Authorities on the scene said the plane's wreckage was in a densely wooded area of steep ravines and hillsides, upside down with one wing torn off.
Updated: The plane's tail number has been retrieved, allowing officials to establish is flight track. And three bodies have now been removed from the wreckage. IDs are expected later today, according to the Olmsted County Sheriff's Office.
The pilot radioed air traffic controllers at the Rochester airport before midnight saying that his engine had failed, MPR reports. National Transportation Safety Board investigators are expected on the scene this morning.