NORTHPORT, Ala. (WIAT) — The National Transportation Safety Board is now handling the investigation of the deadly plane crash in Northport on Sunday. Six victims–three pairs of married couples– were killed when the small plane went down in a wooded area not far from the runway.
The NTSB is now combing through the wreckage in the Van de Graff Arboretum where the plane crashed, hoping to find out what caused the accident, but it could be a while before there are any clear answers.
“Around 11:20 yesterday morning, a Piper plane PA 31, registration November 447, impacted trees and terrain about a quarter mile from Tuscaloosa Regional Airport. There were six people on board who were all fatally injured,” NTSB air safety investigator Heidi Kemner said Monday morning.
Over the next few days the NTSB will be gathering evidence and documenting the wreckage, looking for answers in their official investigation into the fatal crash. The preliminary report will be released in 10 days, and the final report released in one year.”
“We need to find the pilots log book, and we are going to look into the maintenance records for the airplane,” Kemner explained. “We have found the pilot’s logbook but are still searching for the maintenance records. Once we locate those we will document them and use that during the investigation.”
A neighbor living near the crash site captured video on his cell phone just moments after the crash that killed six people when the plane crashed just short of the runway. The aircraft was headed to Oxford, Miss. from Florida.
The Tuscaloosa County Sheriff says this crash is the deadliest in recent memory.
“I think, under my recollection, this is the deadliest one that I am aware of,” Tuscaloosa County Sheriff Abernathy said. “Four years ago was the last fatal plane crash at the airport. There’s been several of them in the past and some pretty close to airport but it’s been several years back.”