Four US citizens and their Australian pilot died in the crash after the plane suffered what is being called a ‘catastrophic engine failure’ shortly after take off around 9am local time on Tuesday.

Amazingly no-one on the ground was hurt. The aircraft crashed into the centre’s warehouse at the rear of the building. The centre was preparing to open at the time so no members of the public were inside.

VIC Police Assistant Commissioner Stephen Lane said: “Looking at the fireball, it is incredibly lucky that no-one was at the back of those stores or in the car park of the stores, that no-one was even hurt,”

The crash caused a blaze which took 60 fire fighters to bring under control.