BREAKING: Plane down at Rockaway Townsquare mall

Authorities said the single-engine Cessna made an emergency landing in the area between the mall’s JC Penney store and the Toys R Us store. The pilot and a passenger exited the aircraft and are uninjured.

The Morris County Prosecutor’s Office, the Morris County Sheriff’s Office, Morris County Emergency Management, Picatinny Arsenal and Rockaway Township emergency response units are on the scene.

The plane reportedly was en route to Essex County Airport when it encountered problems and was forced down.

An eyewitness, Maciej Andrejczyn of Byram, described the pilot’s landing as a “controlled crash.”

Andrejczyn said he was standing outside the mall and saw the plane heading toward the mall. He said the aircraft’s approach was silent — he did not hear any engine noises as the plane flew toward the mall.

The Cessna struck several trees before reaching the mall parking lot, Andrejczyn said, where it bounced, losing a wheel and spun around before coming to rest on its nose. The plane did not strike any cars in the parking lot, he said.

“I would definitely call it a controlled crash,” Andrejczyn said.

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