MIAMI — A small plane crash-landed on a bridge near Haulover Park on Saturday afternoon, hitting a vehicle and bursting into flames, authorities said. The crash sent six people to the hospital, some with serious injuries.
At around 1 p.m., the single-engine Cessna 172 lost engine power and landed on the Haulover Inlet Bridge, the Federal Aviation Administration said. The plane took off from Hollywood-Fort Lauderdale International Airport with three people on board, with a plan to land at Key West International Airport.
Miami-Dade Fire Rescue says the plane was on fire when crews arrived. Arriving firefighters put out the flames and rescued those trapped and injured.
Two people on board the plane suffered major injuries and were taken to local trauma centers, fire-rescue said. Three others suffered non-life threatening injures and were taken to the hospital. Another person also was injured.
Due to fuel runoff from the crash, the Department of Environmental Resources Management was called to the scene, at Collins Avenue and 108th Street.
Social media video shows the plane on the bridge, which spans the inlet where Biscayne Bay flows into the Atlantic Ocean. The bridge is just north of Bal Harbour, Surfside and Miami Beach, and south of Haulover Park and Sunny Isles Beach.
On the bridge, the plane caught fire and broke up. A minivan sat heavily damaged near the plane.
Bal Harbour Manager Jorge Gonzalez said that the crash is having a ripple effect on traffic in the Miami Beach and Northeast Miami-Dade areas.
“It is going to be a challenge for some time,” Gonzalez said. “The traffic grid is very fragile. An accident like this will have repercussions throughout Northeast Dade.”
Sunny Isles Beach police said the Haulover Inlet Bridge on Collins Avenue is closed between Sunny Isles Beach and Bal Harbour.
Southbound Collins Avenue is also closed at 158th Street to the north, and traffic is being diverted. Police advise drivers to find other routes. Heavy delays are expected for hours.
“We are trying to ensure residents and guests of area hotels can get in,” Gonzalez said.
The FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board will be investigating the crash.