“All customers were evacuated safely and all Publix associates are accounted for,” said Publix spokesman Dwaine Stevens.
The store has been shut down temporarily.
The first calls about the Publix plane crash in DeLand, Florida (approximately 35 miles outside of Orlando) came in at around 7:20 p.m. EDT, according to Officer Brandon Haught with the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office. Emergency crews were on the scene in a matter of minutes.
There was some “structural damage to the store’s roof,” Stevens said, but not much else had been affected.
Video from the scene showed nearly a dozen emergency vehicles arriving onto the scene.
Two victims, both with third-degree burns, were being treated at the scene.
It is not yet known what caused the experimental aircraft to crash.
The amphibious Sea Wind 3000 plane encountered problems shortly after taking off from the DeLand Municipal Airport, less than two miles from Publix store. Investigators weren’t sure where the plane was heading.
The 911 calls were released today. Panicked customers dialed for help as they fled from the store.
“Publix is on fire!” a woman from inside the supermarket said. “The store is on fire! OK. We got to go.”
The experimental airplane is made of composite material and was amateur-built back in 2002. It seats four people.
Fire consumed most of the plane, which plunged through the roof of the store and landed between two aisles. The plane didn’t have a black box but investigators may be able to use the plane’s GPS to learn more about the Publix plane crash.
More in the video below.
- Small plane crashes into Fla. supermarket, 5 hurt (newsok.com)
- Small plane crashes into Fla. shopping center (ajc.com)
- Small Plane Crashes Into Central Florida Publix (miami.cbslocal.com)