NORTH LINDENHURST, N.Y. (PIX11) — A small plane crashed near an airport on Long Island, killing one person and critically injuring two others Sunday afternoon, authorities said.

A single-engine Piper PA-28 crashed in North Lindenhurst near Republic Airport just before 3 p.m., approximately 38 minutes and 68 miles into its trip, according to the Suffolk County Police Department.

“A small plane took off from Republic Airport in East Farmingdale with three people on board at 2:18 p.m,” a Suffolk County police spokesperson said. “A short time later, the pilot issued a mayday signal and indicated there was smoke in the cockpit. The aircraft turned back toward the airport to make an emergency landing.”

The plane crashed near the intersection of Wellwood Avenue and 5th Street in North Lindenhurst, about 300 feet south of the Long Island Rail Road track, according to the Suffolk County Police Department.

One of the occupants was pronounced dead at the scene. The two other occupants were taken by helicopter to a hospital, where they were listed in critical condition in the burn unit, police said. The identities of the victims haven’t been released.

“We are very fortunate that nobody else on the ground was injured. Obviously this was a very tragic event, but we’re just happy that nobody else was hurt,” said John Rowan, chief of detectives at the Suffolk County Police Department.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the cause of the crash.