A Learjet 35 crashed in a parking lot while on approach to Runway 1 at Teterboro Airport, in New Jersey, about 3:30 Monday afternoon, killing the two pilots. The two, who reportedly were professional crew members, were the only people on board. The jet had taken off from Philadelphia International Airport, and was owned by A&C Big Sky Aviation in Billings, Montana. It hit a building in an industrial area about a quarter-mile from the airport, skidded across the roof and hit another building before coming to rest on the pavement. Two buildings were damaged by fire, but nobody on the ground was reported hurt. A post-crash fire destroyed the aircraft. About a dozen cars also were destroyed. The flames were quickly doused by first responders. “The plane is pretty much disintegrated,” Carlstadt Mayor Craig Lahullier told local reporters in a news conference.
Local officials told reporters on Monday evening it was “a miracle” that there weren’t more injuries on the ground. One of the buildings had recently been vacated by workers who completed their shift about 3 p.m. On Tuesday afternoon, NTSB investigator Jim Silliman told reporters that a cockpit voice recorder had been recovered and was being shipped to NTSB headquarters. He said the flight wasn’t required to have a CVR. Silliman also saidthe wind at the time of the crash “was a concern.” Winds were gusting at more than 30 mph. “It seemed [controllers] were talking to the aircraft while it was on approach and the pilots didn’t give any sense of an extreme situation or identify any problem with the aircraft at the time,” he said. Surveillance video from the area appears to show the airplane rolling to the right in a nose-down attitude just before impact, which Silliman said indicates a loss of control. “Why it got there is of course the subject of the investigation,” he said. The pilots have not yet been positively identified.
Monday’s crash was the sixth major accident at the airport since 2005, according to the local nj.com news site. Click on the link below for the audio from the control tower in the final moments of the flight, provided by liveATC.net.