One killed in Will County plane crash - FOX 35 News Orlando

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One killed in Will County plane crash

Posted: Updated:
CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

One man was killed when a small plane crashed into a field Tuesday afternoon in southern Will County.

The crash occurred around 3 p.m. about a half-mile from Gougar and Offner roads.

Will County Sheriff Deputy Chief Ken Kaupas said it appears the pilot was the only occupant of the two-engine plane, but the debris and wreckage was still being searched Tuesday evening.

FAA spokesman Tony Molinaro confirmed the one person on board was killed. National Transportation Safety Board spokesman Eric Weiss said the plane that crashed was a Hawker Beechcraft BE-58.

The plane was registered to Bemidji Aviation in Minnesota. A person who answered the phone at the company said he was aware of the crash and that the company was working with the NTSB. No further information would be released about the crash until Wednesday.

The plane appeared to be traveling south or southeast when it struck the ground and left a path of debris nearly 100 yards long.

A deputy Will County coroner arrived at the scene at 4:19 p.m., shortly before emergency management vehicles brought portable lights to set up before darkness fell.

The 74-year-old man inside the plane was pronounced dead at the scene by the Will County coroner's office, according to the sheriff's department.

The coroner's office said the pilot had been tentatively identified, but that information would not be released until family members had been notified.

His body was removed from the scene at 5:20 p.m.

Preliminary information showed he was an out-of-state resident, and was employed at Enbridge Oil Company in Minnesota, authorities said. He was on his way to pick up a passenger in Joliet.

The residents in the closest house to the field said they did not hear or see the crash.

Matthew Wright lives down the road and believes the pilot was on a routine patrol.

"There's an Enbridge pipe line that runs just south of here," Wright says. "They're looking for leaks and stuff from what I gather or problems with the pipeline themselves."

Will County has several oil pipelines running beneath it. Wright says he has dealt with oil pipeline leaks in the area but now has one more thing to worry about.

"It worries me," Wright says. "We see planes the here all the time. We don't want this to happen in our yard."

The FAA planned to send investigators to the crash site Wednesday morning.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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