Plane that left Concord’s airport crashes in Georgia

cwootson@charlotteobserver.comMarch 24, 2014 

A plane that left Concord headed to Florida crashed in a marsh north of Brunswick, Ga., Monday evening, authorities said.

Kathleen Bergen, a spokeswoman for the Federal Aviation Administration, said the Piper PA-44 crashed about 4 miles from Brunswick Golden Isle Airport with two people on board at 7:10 p.m.

The reports came soon after the FAA lost radar contact with a twin-engine plane, according to a news release from the U.S. Coast Guard.

Coast Guard officials planned to resume searching Tuesday for the two people aboard the plane. A helicopter and boat crew were planning to resume searching at sunrise, the Associated Press reported.

The FAA has not released the names of the people on board or given updates on their medical condition.

The plane left Concord’s airport and was scheduled to land at Jacksonville Executive at Craig Airport, Bergen said.

It was unclear late Monday what caused the plane to crash. The FAA is investigating, and the National Transportation Safety Board will determine the cause.

The Florda Times-Union reported that debris from the crash was in an area inaccessible by land. Georgia Department of Natural Resources officials were helping to search for the wreckage by boat Monday evening, Glynn County (Ga.) Police Chief Matt Doering told the newspaper.

Marshes of Mackay resident Valerie Whitehead told the Florida Times-Union that she was walking in the neighborhood when the sound of the plane’s engines caught her attention. “It was making a noise like it was trying to climb,” she said.

Then the sound of the engines stopped.

“You could just see it going backward and floating down almost,” Whitehead told the newspaper. Then she heard the sound of loud impact.

Wootson: 704-358-5046; Twitter: @CleveWootson

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