Officials: 7 dead in WWII-era plane crash at Bradley Airport

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Officials say seven people were killed Wednesday when a World War II-era plane crashed at Bradley International Airport.

They say at 9:45 a.m. a vintage B-17 plane took off from Runway 6 with 10 passengers and three crew members on board. Within minutes, officials say the flight couldn't maintain altitude and crashed into a building used for deicing equipment.

James C. Rovella, the state commissioner of the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection, said there were six survivors on board who had injuries that ranged from minor to critical.

He said that there were two airport employees in the deicing station and that one of those employees was injured. A firefighter was also among the injured.

 

Rovella says the actions of surviving passengers and first responders helped prevent an even higher death toll.

The crash is being investigated by several agencies, including Connecticut State Police, the National Transportation Safety Board and the FBI.

Chopper 12 was above the scene, which showed smoke from the wreckage and responding emergency vehicles.

The airport was temporarily closed while flights were diverted to TF Green International Airport outside Providence, Rhode Island.

Victims were taken to Hartford Hospital and the burn unit at Bridgeport Hospital.

A News 12 viewer sent a video of the actual plane that went down from a recent air show. It was featured in an air show in New Jersey in August.

The Collings Foundation, which operated the B-17, says it is suspending all activities for the near future, including a tour event at Westchester County Airport scheduled for Thursday.

Airport officials say the plane was part of the Foundation's "Wings of Freedom" vintage aircraft display.

The NTSB expects to be at the crash site for at least one week.

The Associated Press helped to contribute to this article.

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