The inhabitants of the Limburg town of Meerssen, near Maastricht, are very shocked by the falling aircraft parts on Saturday.

After an explosion in the engine of a cargo plane, countless parts fell into place like rain.

"They have experienced this very intensely. The shock is good," said Mayor Mirjam Clermonts.

Many people were outside because of the nice weather.

Residents suddenly heard loud bangs and saw burst flames from the engine of the plane.

"A shower of debris," said one resident.

Everyone ran to sheltered places to protect themselves from the throwing metal debris.

The pieces that came down and fell to the ground, cars, people and roofs were red-hot.

A woman and a child were slightly injured by it.

It would be a four-engined Boeing 747-400 freighter with destination New York.

After the explosions, the aircraft made a precautionary landing in Liège, Belgium.

The cause of the incident is unknown.

The Dutch Safety Board (OVV) is starting an exploratory investigation, which means that researchers collect the facts to determine whether an extensive investigation is needed.

To this end, the OVV enters into talks with the local authorities, the emergency services and the airport.