Tragedy almost struck the Earnhardt family once again after reports confirmed the Nascar legend was involved in a plane crash Thursday afternoon. Earnhardt, along with his wife, one-year-old child and the family dog were on board when the crash took place. According to reports, no one was killed in the fiery crash, and all parties were taken to a nearby hospital.
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Earnhardt’s private plane rolled off the runway Thursday around 3:30 p.m. at Elizabethton Municipal Airport in Carter County, Tennessee. The 44-year-old was taken to a nearby hospital for minor injuries, the Daily Mail reported.
Earnhardt’s wife Amy and his daughter Isla were also taken to the same hospital. It’s unclear what, if any, injuries they sustained. Both the pilot and co-pilot were also reported as safe.
A video of first responders tending to Earnhardt was posted on Facebook shortly after the crash. In the video, Earnhardt can be seen having a neck brace placed on him. He was conscious and responding to first responder’s questions.
Dale’s sister Kelly tweeted that all members on board were safe. “Everyone is safe and has been taken to the hospital for further evaluation. We have no further information at this time. Thank you for your understanding.”
According to CNN, The Federal Aviation Administration confirmed the crash happened after they had landed but continued to roll off the runway, resulting in a fiery inferno. The fuselage of the airplane was wrapped around a fence that stopped the plane from going further but could have resulted in tragedy.
“If the fence had blocked the exit that could have been really bad,” Fire Chief Barry Carrier said in a press conference following the crash. “They were very lucky.”
It’s currently unclear if it was a pilot or mechanical error that caused the crash. All five occupants inside the plane were already outside and away from the crash when the fire department arrived on the scene.
“When our first unit arrived, there were heavy flames coming from the airplane,” Carrier said. Thankfully, the fire was put out in less than 20 minutes. Dale was released from the hospital after a few hours.