The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) says six people died when a vintage plane crashed north of Brisbane on Monday.
According to the Australian, the plane, a 1934 De Havilland DH84 Dragon, disappeared on its return flight home from an airshow, shortly after the pilot reported it was in trouble. Experts suggest the vintage craft was not equipped to fly through fog or cloud, and weather likely contributed to the crash.
AMSA spokesman Mike Barton said the plane must have “hit the ground exceedingly hard” when it crashed about 8 1/2 miles north of Borumba Dam.
“The plane is not in a condition that you would recognize as a plane,” Barton said. “So they have hit the ground exceedingly hard and the aircraft is fundamentally destroyed.”
While rescue workers originally had a difficult time locating the site of the crash, Barton says authorities had an idea of where to look because of a mobile phone on board the downed plane.
“Phones themselves these days talk backwards and forwards to the towers at different stages,” he said, adding that the inspection of the aircraft’s wreckage would go on for days.
ABC notes those killed in the crash were were pilot Desmond Porter, 68, and his wife Cath Porter, 61, from Tingalpa in Brisbane’s east; John Dawson, 63, and his wife Carol Dawson, 63, who are also from Tingalpa; and Les D’evlin, 75, and his wife Janice D’evlin, 61.
The crash is Australia’s worst since 15 people died in the Lockhart River air disaster on Cape York Peninsula in May 2005.
Courier Mail has more on the tragic Australia plane crash in the video below: