5 Dead After C-130 Military Cargo Plane Crashes In Georgia
At least five people were killed Wednesday when a military cargo plane crashed near Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport minutes after takeoff, sending black smoke billowing into the sky, authorities said. Capt. Jeff Bezore, spokesman for the Georgia Air National Guard, said he was not certain how many people were aboard the C-130 Hercules flown by members of the 156th Air Wing from the Puerto Rico Air National Guard.
Savannah’s Chatham Emergency Management Agency said the Arizona-bound flight crashed at an intersection near the airport and part of the plane was on the roadway. Photos and video from near the scene showed the wreckage burning until firefighters doused the blaze.
A C-130 military cargo plane crashed Wednesday in Port Wentworth, Georgia, killing all five passengers on board.A spokeswoman for the Port Wentworth Fire Department said a call came out and “everyone scrambled” to the scene. She could see black smoke “pouring” into the sky from her location, she said.
Five people were killed in the crash, according to The Associated Press.
Minh Phan, 25, was walking near an outlet mall in Pooler when he saw “a huge black plume.”
“I was pretty shocked,” Phan told HuffPost in an email. “I knew it couldn’t be good. We have a lot of passenger, private and military aircraft that fly in the area, and that was my biggest concern was that something just crashed.”
The plane belongs to the Puerto Rico National Guard, Desiree Bamba, a spokeswoman for the Georgia National Guard, told HuffPost.
“It’s a sad day for the National Guard, and our thoughts and prayers are with the families of everyone involved and everyone with the National Guard as we work through this,” Maj. Paul Dahlen, a spokesman for the Puerto Rico National Guard, told the AP.
Reports on the number of people on the plane were conflicting. Georgia officials initially put the number at five; Puerto Rico officials said five to nine. Master Sgt. Roger Parsons, a spokesman for the Air Force, would not speculate on cause of the crash and said it was too soon to provide definitive numbers.
He also would not say if there were any survivors.
“There were airmen on the plane that are deceased,” he said. “We cannot confirm the number of souls on the plane.”
Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossello tweeted his condolences: “We are saddened by the plane accident that occurred today in Georgia.”
Witness James Lavine said he was driving home from work along Highway 21 when the plane crashed in front of him.
“It was getting ready to take a left bank right in front of me and all of a sudden I see the plane just stalling” before it crashed, he said. “It’s the most terrifying thing I’ve seen.”