At least 49 people have died after a plane crashed into a house in the US.

Continental Airlines flight 3407 from Newark in New Jersey to Buffalo in New York had 44 passengers and four crew on board when it crashed in the town of Clarence amid rain and sleet.

At least one house was destroyed and the authorities have evacuated another 12 properties.

Becky Gibbons of New York State Police said all 48 people aboard the aircraft were killed. At least one person on the ground also died.

A huge blaze engulfed the area of the crash site and crews of firefighters are battling to control the flames.

The Federal Aviation Administration said the plane crashed six miles short of the airport.

There is no word yet on the cause of the crash.

Resident Sean Wolf said: "I was in my room, just sitting up there and the plane was just coming in and it was really low, it sounded like it was low and all of a sudden, I heard just like a big popping noise.

"I looked out my window and the whole sky illuminated with orange flames and I just saw the flames run up and I ran down my stairs to get my parents and we just left and went over to the site."

The plane's operator, Colgan Air, said the plane was a Bombardier Dash 8 Q400 that can carry more than 70 people.