One person was killed and two were seriously injured when a seaplane they were in crashed into a concrete pier in Whitestone, Queens, on Sunday, fire officials said.
The small, single-engine Cessna crashed about 3 p.m. just west of the Throgs Neck Bridge near Powells Cove Boulevard and 158th Street, New York City Fire Department officials said.
“Witnesses said that the plane was traveling rather fast along the water, skipped twice and hit the pier,” Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro said in a news conference. The plane, he said, was “broken in pieces.”
A jet skier who witnessed the crash helped rescue two of the people who survived. The third person was removed by Fire Department personnel.
Two others were also injured, including the jet skier, but they were treated on the scene.
The cause of the crash was not yet known, but Commissioner Nigro said that the Federal Aviation Administration would be on the scene soon to investigate. The F.A.A. did not immediately respond to emails or phone calls seeking comment. The National Transportation Safety Board said it was investigating the crash but will not travel to the scene.
Fire Department officials did not identify the victims, but Commissioner Nigro said the pilot was “a local resident” known to many in the neighborhood who “flies in and out of here often.” The plane is usually kept nearby, he said, in a hangar behind the pilot’s home.
Mayor Bill de Blasio tweeted details about the accident on Sunday, adding, “Please keep these people and their families in your thoughts tonight.”