The Cullman County Sheriff's Office has confirmed that two people are dead after a "light aircraft" crashed near Smith Lake Monday afternoon.
The Sheriff's Office says the plane went down off of County Road 174 near the Crane Hill community. Sheriff's deputies and local fire department officials are on the scene now.
The FAA reports that a Mooney 20 aircraft with two people on board crashed around 2 p.m. today. The plane was flying from Destin, Fla. to the Sumner County Airport in Gallatin, Tenn. The identities of the two people killed in the crash have not yet been released by officials.
As of 6 p.m. Monday evening, the crash scene was still active. Cullman County and FAA officials were still investigating and reporter Christy Hutchings told FOX6 News that National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) personnel were expected to arrive overnight to join the investigation.
Sheriff's deputies said that if neighbors hadn't heard or seen the crash, they would not have been able to respond as quickly. The area around the crash site is rural, made up of pastureland and forested areas.
One neighbor told FOX6 that he saw the plane flying low and didn't immediately think much of it. But then he saw fire and smoke and called authorities. Another woman said she heard the crash, but thought it was thunder from a storm that was rolling through the area at the time.
This crash is the third deadly plane crash in Alabama in the past three days.
Saturday, a pilot named William Shaver crashed into Weiss Lake in Cherokee County. Shaver was the only person on board the aircraft and was flying from Guntersville to visit friends in the area. Officials say Shaver was trying to land when he clipped a main power line and crashed into the lake. He did not survive.
Two people also died in a plane crash in Madison County on Sunday near the Moontown Airport in Brownsboro, Tenn. The pilot of the plane, George Myers, 74, and a 17-year-old passenger named Christian Schmitt were killed in the crash.
Check back for more details on this developing story.
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