Two dead after cargo plane goes off runway at West Virginia airport

Lauren Perry
May 6, 2017

An investigation has been opened into a cargo plane crash at Yeager Airport in the U.S. state of West Virginia that reportedly killed two people, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said on Friday.

Almost two dozen emergency vehicles lined the runway as emergency crews tried to reach the crash site from above and below, Yeager airport spokesman Mike Plante said.

The two were the only people on board the aircraft, which crashed at Yeager Airport in Charleston, West Virginia, said Bill Carpenter, spokesman for Kanawha County Emergency Medical Services.

WOWK has confirmed that Yeager Airport is shut down after a Mountain Air Cargo plane went off the runway shortly before 7:00 a.m.

Investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board are headed to Charleston.

"It's hard terrain to negotiate", said Mike Plante, a spokesman at Yeager airport, which serves West Virginia's capital.

The plane slid off a runway and down a hill around 7am local time (12pm GMT), prompting county officials to declare a county-wide state of emergency. The plane is owned by a company called Air Cargo Carriers.

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It wasn't immediately clear whether additional injuries have been reported. It went over a hillside, killing two.

Part of a cargo plane lays on the ground following a fatal crash at Yeager Airport in Charleston, W. Va.on May 5, 2017.

"As we attempt to learn more about the situation, we are keeping the crew involved in our heartfelt thoughts", UPS said in a statement.

Yeager Airport will remain closed until sometime Saturday.

The plane left Louisville airport at 5:41 a.m. Friday.

Airport officials have quoted a spend of $290 million in order to restore and extend damages caused to the runway in 2015 when a landslide incident destroyed a nearby house and church.

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