3 Injured After Plane Crashes Along Route 50 in Bowie, Md. | NBC4 Washington

3 Injured After Plane Crashes Along Route 50 in Bowie, Md.

Two were airlifted to Shock Trauma; one taken to local hospital

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    News4 Prince George's County Bureau Chief Tracee Wilkins with the latest on a small plane crash in Bowie. (Published Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2013)

    Three people were injured after their small plane crashed into trees south of Bowie, Md., late Monday afternoon.

    The four-seat Mooney model M20 aircraft began losing altitude for unknown reasons just after takeoff from Freeway Airport and crashed alongside Route 50 near Church Road, almost clipping cars.

    Maryland State Police received a call around 3:45 p.m. from a driver who reported seeing the plane go down.

    Alireza Tivay, 58, of Washington -- the owner and pilot of the plane -- and 45-year-old Seth Sharpe of Laurel, Md., were flown to Shock Trauma in Baltimore, and 48-year-old Deborah Tucker of Alexandria, Va., was taken to Prince George's Hospital Center.

    State troopers extricated Tucker from the plane when they reached the scene.

    Police said they have not determined the relationship between the three people, all of whom were seriously injured, the Associated Press reported.

    A witness said he saw the plane going down, then back up, then down again and slamming into the treeline after nearly clipping some cars.

    No one on the ground was injured.

    Several drivers pulled over and jumped out of their cars to help after witnessing the crash.

    "Some other guys came to help with tire irons, and we got the rear window out of the plane, and I was able to get in the plane," said witness Michael Dougherty.

    He said he helped get the victims out of their seat belts and tried to reassure them.

    "What was making me mad about it, was everybody wanted to take pictures, instead of going in and helping these people," said witness C.J. Jones. "...So finally, some of us went up to help them, and I opened the door, and one of the police officers told me, 'Just keep talking to them; keep talking to them; keep talking to them.'"

    Two of the victims had to be extracted from the plane. It's unclear whether the other victim had been ejected, an officer said.

    All lanes of Route 50 were shut down in both directions around 4:30 p.m. to allow medevac helicopters to land, snarling traffic for those returning from the beach after Labor Day weekend.

    The right lane and shoulder of westbound Route 50 remained closed at the scene Tuesday afternoon and will remain closed for an extended period of time, according to Maryland State Police.

    The National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration are investigating.

    Stay with News4 and NBCWashington.com for more as the story develops.

    Photo above by News4's @DarcySpencer.

    Photo above courtesy of Theresa Abellon.

    Photo above courtesy of Theresa Abellon.