At least two people were killed after a WC-130 military plane carrying five people crashed Wednesday near a Georgia airport, officials said.
The county deputy coroner told The Associated Press two people were killed when the plane from Puerto Rico Air National Guard crashed around 11:30 a.m., shortly after takeoff from Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport.
The Air National Guard plane was bound for Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Arizona and on a training mission when it went down, Georgia Air National Guard said. The wreckage was seen at the intersection of Highway 21 and Crossgate Road, officials said.
“There has been a plane crash at the intersection of Hwy 21 at Crossgate Rd. Roads will be shut down. Please avoid the area,” Chatham EMA tweeted.
Photos from the ground showed a section of the plane engulfed by fire and thick black smoke billowing to the sky. Only pieces of the aircraft were seen among the smoke.
It’s unclear exactly what caused the crash. Georgia Air National Guard said a board of officers will investigate the incident.
Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport said flights were being impacted by the plane crash and urged fliers to check with airlines regarding their flights.
A WC-130 is a weather reconnaissance aircraft used by the Air Force and Air National Guard. The planes usually accommodate five people, according to the U.S. Air Force fact sheet.