US Airways Jet Crashes into Hudson River

NEW YORK (AP) - A government official says the US Airways plane that crashed in the Hudson River near New York City today had hit a bird and two engines were disabled.

The crash sent passengers fleeing for safety in the frigid waters. Amazingly, none of the passengers were killed. Medical crews were still trying to determine how severe some injuries were.

A spokeswoman for the Federal Aviation Administration says US Airways Flight 1549 had taken off from LaGuardia Airport on its way to Charlotte, N.C., when the crash occurred.

The plane went down near 48th Street in midtown Manhattan. She says the plane appeared to have hit one or more birds. One passenger (Jeff Kolodjay of Norwalk, Connecticut), says he heard an explosion two or three minutes into the flight. He looked out of the left side of the plane and could see one of the engines on fire.

He says the captain told everyone 'Brace for impact because we're going down.' He describes the experience as "intense" and credits the pilot with making a "hell of a landing." It was submerged in the icy waters up to the windows.

Rescue crews opened a door and were pulling passengers in yellow life vests from the plane. Several boats surrounded the plane, which was slowly sinking. Government officials say there's no indication that the crash is related to terrorism.