Two Dead In Mobile Plane Crash

News

4:30 PM UPDATE

The Mobile Airport Authority Executive Director, Roger Wehner, tweeted an update involving the two men killed in Monday night’s plane crash.

12:00 PM UPDATE

WKRG is providing team coverage of the plane crash. WKRG is learning the two men on board devoted much of their times to helping others. Click the play button to watch a portion of our Noon show.11:43 AM UPDATE

The Civil Air Patrol has identified the victims of Monday night’s plane crash:

Maj. David R. Mauritson, of Fairhope, has been a member of CAP since September 1991.

Also on board was 2nd Lt. Phil J. Dryden of Gulf Shores, who has been a member of CAP since Nov. 2015.

Mauritson was the plane’s pilot and Dryden the mission scanner.

10:30 AM UPDATE

The Civil Air Patrol just released a statement involving Monday night’s crash. The pilot and passenger were on their way back from Louisiana when their Cessna crashed near Mobile Regional Airport. Read entire statement here:Two CAP Members Perish in Plane Crash Near MobileTwo Alabamians perished in a plane crash yesterday near Mobile.A Civil Air Patrol C182 assigned to the Alabama Wing was located at 2 a.m. today 1 mile west of Mobile Regional Airport. There were two people onboard.The CAP members were returning to Mobile from a compassion flight flying an individual to Baton Rouge for medical care. A distress beacon from the aircraft was received approximately 8 p.m. Monday, and the crash site was located by CAP members and local first responders.CAP is cooperating with authorities investigating the accident.The Alabama Wing consists of 20 squadrons located statewide and more than 850 members. In 2015 the wing conducted six search and rescue missions and was credited with three finds.10:05 AM UPDATE

WKRG News 5 has learned the plane, which crashed Monday night just west of Mobile Regional Airport, was a Civil Air Patrol plane. It was a Cessna 182. The National Transportation Safety Board is now investigating what happened Monday night. Investigators are arriving on the scene between the airport and Snow Road to collect evidence at the crash site. News 5 will update this story as we learn more about the pilot and passenger on board. We will also have live updates today on News 5 at Noon. 7:05 AM UPDATE

The weather was a problem last night and it will likely be a problem again today.  With rain in the forecast it could hamper efforts to clear the area to and around the crash site.

We’re still very early on in the investigation and we have no idea what caused the plane to go down.  One assumes it might be weather related given the conditions last night but there could have been a number of factors that contributed to the accident.

So far no one’s released the identities of the two people killed in the Monday night crash.  All we know is they were coming home from a charity flight.  Officials have not disclosed where the flight origininated.

3:50 AM UPDATE

Airport Authority Director Roger Wehner said two people are dead after a plane crash in Mobile.  The plane was found shortly before two this morning in what he described as a wet bottom, heavily wooded between the airport and Snow Road.  Two people were on board and killed in the crash.

Wehner said it was a small, single engine, Cessna aircraft but would not release a tail number.  He said they had filed a flight plan.  Wehner said they were a doing legs on a charity flight and had already dropped off their passenger.

I think they were arriving in Mobile from previous legs I think they were on, what we call an angel flight or mercy flight and they had already dropped off their passenger and were coming back,” said Wehner.  It took crews six hours to find the plane.  I asked if they had used an electronic locator to find the aircraft.

“Lot of folks in the woods, we created a picket line and walked the woods,” said Wehner.  “A lot of us started in three wheelers and we couldn’t go  25 yards, it’s too dense it was literally walking the whole way.”  The search was hindered all night by poor, foggy conditions.  “To be candid with you the last seven or so hours it’s just been doing everything we can to find the site and look for survivors and try to do the best we could to help,” said Wehner.  From here the NTSB takes over.

Then we’ll have heavy equipment come in, clear a path in so we can actually get to the site and when NTSB is done we’ll deal with the remainder, balance of the site,” said Wehner.   2:45 am UPDATE

In a brief update, airport authority officials confirm they have found the plane adjacent to Mobile Regional Airport property.  Nothing further at this time, we are waiting for Airport Authority Director Roger Wehner to give us an update on camera.  In an update an hour ago Wehner said it has been a very difficult search hampered by poor conditions.

I can tell you this we have every agency available on this, they are currently on out in the field we’re moving teams it is not good weather out there which is hindering some of the assets,” said Wehner.10:45PM UPDATE: PLANE CRASH IS UNCONFIRMED AT THIS TIME, AIRPORT AUTHORITY WIDENS SEARCH AREA

Mobile Fire and other agencies are searching for a “small plane” that went missing and “possibly crashed” while approaching Mobile Regional Airport.

News 5 has confirmed the plane has NOT been found as of 10:38pm.  Authorities say airport communicators lost contact with the plane about a mile west of the runway around 7:45pm on Monday night. They don’t know if the plane crashed or was forced to make an emergency landing due to extreme fog in the area.

Crews are searching a two-mile radius from Mobile Regional Airport for the plane that may have crashed somewhere near Flave Pierce Road.

News 5 has learned the U.S. Coast Guard is flying in from New Orleans to help search the area for the missing plane.

A dense fog settled in over the city on Monday, so much so, that Mobile Regional Airport acknowledged the low visibility on Twitter:

Updates to follow.

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