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World War II-era B-17 bomber crashes in Hartford, killing 5

A vintage World War II-era aircraft crashed at Bradley International airport Hartford, Connecticut on 2 October, killing five and injuring at least 14 others, local media report.

The aircraft, a Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress, apparently had difficulties after take-off and was returning to the field for an emergency landing. It burst into flames upon impact and video images showed a large plume of black smoke rising from the wreckage. Public safety officials said it had crashed into a building on the field. They added that 10 passengers and three crew had been on board.

Kevin Dillon, executive director of the Connecticut Airport Authority, said at a press conference that the plane took off about 9:45 local time and five minutes later the crew reported a problem to the tower. Witnesses on the ground said they had heard one of the engines sputtering shortly before the crash.

Bradley airport, the second-largest in the New England region, was closed following the accident and the FAA imposed a ground stop for arriving flights. One runway opened after 13:30 EST.

The B-17 was a heavy bomber that played a key role in the Allied victory in the European theatre of World War II. The aircraft that crashed was one of 18 still registered to fly in the USA, said Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont after the accident.

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