2 dead after small plane, described as experimental, crashes in Wisconsin

Elliot Hughes
| Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Two people died in a small plane crash about a mile south of a Wisconsin regional airport Tuesday morning, the airport’s first fatal crash in more than 20 years. 

The plane briefly reported an undisclosed issue to a radio tower around 9:15 a.m. after taking off from Southern Wisconsin Regional Airport near Janesville and then crash-landed in a swampy area, Rock County Sheriff Troy Knudson said.

No information on the victims or additional information on the cause of the crash was immediately available. The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating. 

It was the first fatal crash at the airport since 1999, an airport employee told the The Gazette in Janesville. The Gazette added the last fatal crash before that incident was at least 30 years prior. 

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During a news conference, Knudson and other officials were unsure of the plane’s destination. They noted it appeared to be some kind of experimental aircraft, but the National Transportation Safety Board described it as a Velocity V-Twin – a homebuilt aircraft.

The plane was found upside down, with the victims submerged in a swampy, hard-to-reach area for first responders, officials said. Its wings had been torn off when it hit trees.

Follow Elliot Hughes on Twitter: @elliothughes12.

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