Reports: One Dead In Aspen Plane Crash

4:39 PM, Jan 5, 2014   |    comments
Photo: KUSA
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John Bacon and Raquel Villanueva, USA TODAY

A private plane crashed and burned Sunday at an airport in Aspen, Colo., the Federal Aviation Administration said.

The Aviation Safety Network, citing local authorities, reported that one person died, one was severely injured and the third person on the plane suffered minor to moderate injuries. Emergency crews were at the scene at the Aspen/Pitkin County Airport, which was closed after the crash at 12:30 p.m. MT, the FAA said.

The network report, citing Pitkin County Sheriff officials, said the plane "came to rest upside down on runway 15. A fire erupted."

FAA spokesman Allen Kenitzer said the plane appeared to be a twin-engine Bombardier Challenger 600 en route to from Tucson, Ariz., to Aspen, about 100 miles southwest of Denver.

Jay Sills, who was at the airport, said he saw the plane moments after it crashed.

"I just saw a huge plume of smoke," Sills said . "I came around the corner and the plane was upside down, rocking back and forth, next to the runway."

Sills says it appeared the cabin was still intact. He says a firetruck was on scene almost immediately after crash.

Comedian Kevin Nealon tweeted from the scene: "Horrible plane crash here at Aspen airport. Exploded into flames as it was landing. I think it was a private jet."

Later he tweeted: "Fire trucks and other emergency vehicles still at scene. No word on survivors or who was on jet but I can't imagine there are survivors."

Singer LeAnn Rimes tweeted: "So sad! Horrible plane crash we just saw happen at the Aspen airport."

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