NTSB, FAA and Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office investigators are looking into a small plane crash that happened early Saturday morning in Clearwater, Florida. The crash killed one person and seriously injured 2 passengers aboard. Local news media report the people onboard were flying here for Spring Break. The crash happened around 4 a.m. Saturday on McMullen Booth Road, just south of Enterprise Road. The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office reports the single-engine Piper left a Chicago area airport around 6:30 p.m. Friday and crashed just a few miles away from its destination, the St. Petersburg-Clearwater Airport. A nearby resident, who did not see the crash, says he heard a loud boom and thought it was a transformer that blew around 4 a.m. All 3 people aboard the Piper plane were from Round Lake, Illinois. The PCSO identified the deceased pilot as Jeffrey Bronken. The two seriously-injured passengers, Katherine Bronken and Keyana Linbo, were taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital.
Clearwater Police closed McMullen Booth Road to traffic at Sunset Point. It remained closed in both directions at 2:3o p.m. Saturday.