A small-engine plane crashed into a parking lot in Plano, Texas on November 21, 2023.
CNN  — 

A pilot flying a single-engine aircraft that careened into a Texas shopping center parking lot on Tuesday has died, Plano Fire Department Lt. Daniel Daly told CNN.

The pilot was the only person onboard the small Mooney M20, which crashed north of the Air Park-Dallas Airport in Plano, Texas, around 6 p.m. CT, according to a Federal Aviation Administration spokesperson. The aircraft landed in a parking lot less than a mile from the airport, according to Daly.

The plane “did not land on or collide with anything,” Daly said.

Authorities have not identified the pilot and it’s unclear what led to the crash.

The aircraft became engulfed in flames, which Daly said eventually spread to an unoccupied vehicle nearby. Video taken by witness Corban Garcia shows first responders battling fire around the plane’s smoke-blackened frame, which is crumpled just feet from a row of shops.

Garcia said he first heard an explosion Tuesday night as he was leaving his workplace across the street from the shopping center.

“I looked up to the left and saw a huge plume of smoke,” he said.

“Honestly, at first I thought it was a car fire until I saw the tail of the airplane,” Garcia said. “Then I was shocked.”

Another witness who was driving by, Shawn Anderson, said he saw the plane in flight before it crashed and noticed it was moving unusually.

“The plane made a turn like he was going up but didn’t look right,” Anderson said. When he looked back, he said he saw a billowing cloud of black smoke and the plane had smashed into a parking lot in front of a diner.

The National Transportation Safety Board will lead an investigation into the cause of the crash, according to the FAA, which is also participating in the inquiry.

CNN’s Amanda Jackson contributed to this report.