2 dead as jet crashes on approach to Teterboro

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 — A LearJet crashed into an industrial area of Carlstadt on Monday afternoon while on its final approach to Teterboro Airport, killing the two crew members on board.

The FAA said the crash occurred at 3:30 p.m. about a quarter mile southeast of the airport. Two crew members were killed in the crash, Carlstadt Sgt. Scott Jordan said.

Nobody else was on board the aircraft.

The Lear 35, which had departed from Philadephia International Airport, crashed into the parking lot of the Carlstadt Department of Public Works on Kero Road. 

Joe Orlando, spokesperson for the borough of Carlstadt, told NBC that he witnessed melted cars and black smoke coming from the area. 

“I’m looking at the engine of a Lear – a private – plane,” he told NBC.

Orlando said he saw response vehicles from many towns, including Carlstadt and East Rutherford, focused on trying to put the fires out.

Mark Dykstra, 37, who lives in a building across the street from where the plane crashed, said, “We were sitting in our building and we felt the whole building shake. We went outside and there was black smoke. Thick black smoke.”

Nicholas Hill, a worker at the county department of public works, told NJ Advance Media that he was near the scene a few minutes after the crash.

“There was nothing left,” he said. “The plane is gone. There is nothing.”

Workers at Allied Beverage Group, whose offices and warehouse are just east of the crash site, said they could see some piece of the aircraft sticking out of the damaged building at an angle. The building was engulfed in dark smoke, and several cars appear to have been struck as well. Workers there are used to low-flying planes.

“Sometimes when I’m out there walking, I feel like I can almost look in the windows they’re so close,” said Cathy Lamola.

According to FAA records, the plane — a fixed wing, multi-engine plane manufactured in 1981 — is registered to a private company called A&C Big Sky Aviation based in Billings, Montana.

In the hours prior to the crash, a wind advisory was in effect in Bergen County because of gusty winds generated by the friction between a low-pressure system that was leaving the region and a high-pressure system moving in.

At 3 p.m., winds at Teterboro Airport were blowing in from the northwest at 15 mph and gusting as high as 39 mph, according to Carlie Buccola, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service’s regional office in Upton, N.Y.

It is not clear if high winds played a role in the crash.

Gusty winds were also reported Monday afternoon at other airports in the region, including Newark Liberty International Airport and Linden Airport. Newark Liberty had a peak wind gust of 32 mph at 3 p.m., and Linden Airport recorded a gust of 30 mph, Buccola said.

The Port Authority said that Teterboro Airport was closed due to the crash.

NJ Advance Media staff writers Len Melisurgo, Anthony G. Attrino and Erin Petenko contributed to this report.

Spencer Kent may be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter . Find the .


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